Education: Should teachers wear uniforms in school?

Published: February 9, 2013


school uniforms

Do students suspect a double standard is in play when they are expected to wear school uniforms and teachers are not? Submitted photo

Should teachers wear uniforms if their students are required to do so?

A teacher scans her closet every morning, deciding what to wear.  She works in a private school where students wear pressed collared shirts under scratchy sweaters, all day long.  Their pants are so dark and new looking that an inkblot could blend right in.  The girls know the rules, too, such as  no nail polish. Or it’s a trip to the office, where an unblinking secretary tells them in a curt voice, “You know the rules!”

That teacher scans her closet.  “Beige or red?” she asks herself in a morning voice.  She’s professional:  no jeans that look like jeans, no revealing T-shirts, nothing too casual, or slouchy.  And after 10 minutes, she’s out the door.

Now, if she was expected to wear a uniform, there’d be one less decision to make.  And she’d have more time for other things such as, planning an engaging mini-lesson on “phonemic awareness.”

As a classroom teacher myself, I like picking out my outfits.  It’s a creative process; putting things together, colour coordinating them.  There’s some thought involved!  And the decision is impacted by time limits, I’ve only got 10 minutes here!  What am I going to wear?  You learn to organize your clothes when you have to sort them, hang them up, or plan them.  All are very important skills that children should learn.  Really, any decision-making opportunity (small as it may be) ultimately makes you a better decision maker.

On the flip side, being able to say OK, where’s my scratchy sweater? gives ‘us teachers’ a little more time in the mornings, which is a great thing.

So a student wears his polished shoes to school, but his teacher wears a pair of sneakers to work, and there’s no basketball game going on!  If I was that student, I might be slightly jealous.  Not of the sneakers, but of the freedom to wear those sneakers.  I may even suspect a double standard, and wonder why my teacher is not modelling the school’s dress code.

Most public schools in B.C. do not enforce a dress code for classroom teachers.  There are general guidelines of what is appropriate, and what is not.  However, where uniforms are the school’s official dress code, teachers are usually not expected to wear them.

Should they be?

Amrita Sahota is an elementary school teacher.  She has worked extensively within the field of Child and Youth Care.  Currently, Amrita is working as a Teacher on Call.  She enjoys creative writing, and writing teaching stories and strategies, that she shares with other teachers on her teaching blog.  She can be emailed at

Tags: , , , ,


Elizabeth Taylor

Divorced BC couple hope to remarry this summer despite woman’s terminal cancer diagnosis

DAN FUMANO VANCOUVER DESI For better and for worse, a lot has happened to Kim and Andrew Hopkins in the years between the first time…
Continue Reading »

India marriage-abuse-prostitution-poverty

Indian bride takes a toilet as wedding gift

IANS Akola – A toilet stole the show at a traditional Maharashtrian marriage here. The prefabricated toilet with a water closet, a wash-basin and mirror…
Continue Reading »


Ravi Shastri retained as India caretaker coach for Bangladesh tour next week

THE ASSOCIATED PRESS NEW DELHI — Former allrounder Ravi Shastri will continue as India’s de facto coach after being retained as team director for the…
Continue Reading »


Elizabeth Taylor

Divorced BC couple hope to remarry this summer despite woman’s terminal cancer diagnosis

DAN FUMANO VANCOUVER DESI For better and for worse, a lot has happened to Kim and Andrew Hopkins in the years between the first time…
Continue Reading »


Food watchdog detains corn livestock feed from India over health concerns

JOHN COTTER THE CANADIAN PRESS EDMONTON — The Canadian Food Inspection Agency says it is detaining corn shipments from India used for livestock feed to…
Continue Reading »


Canada set to deport Pakistani man accused of ties to terrorist group

COLIN PERKEL THE CANADIAN PRESS TORONTO — A Pakistani man who amassed a collection of high-power guns will be deported as soon as Canadian authorities…
Continue Reading »

Don't Miss...

Caitlyn Jenner

Bruce Jenner debuts as woman on Vanity Fair cover

IANS New Delhi – Transgender Olympic champion and reality TV star Bruce Jenner unveiled her new name Caitlyn Jenner in a Vanity Fair cover shoot….
Continue Reading »


Indian website Mintified’s social media campaign saying ‘all men are not rapists’ backfires

HINDUSTAN TIMES An Indian website’s social media campaign that “all men are not rapists” has come in for intense criticism over its “dangerous message”. Mintified started a…
Continue Reading »


End Gang Life: Dial-a-doper is truly risky business

SGT. LINDSEY HOUGHTON SPECIAL TO VANCOUVER DESI The Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit of B.C. released brand new videos in the End Gang Life campaign. …
Continue Reading »

sexy legs and breasts

Men prefer brains over big breasts and long legs: Study

IANS London – What do men prefer, beauty or brains? According to a British evolutionary biologist, men prefer intelligence over big breasts and long legs…
Continue Reading »

blood sugar-desi

South Asian people poor at managing diabetes

IANS London – Limited knowledge of diabetes and the belief that the state of their health is out of their control has led to poor…
Continue Reading »

Bollywood Latest


Bollywood actress Vidya Balan to promote World Ethnic Day

IANS New Delhi – Actress Vidya Balan, who often sports saris, has been roped in by online ethnic products marketplace as the face of…
Continue Reading »


Action takes Bollywood beauty Priyanka Chopra into superhero world

IANS Mumbai – After clinching a beauty crown, Priyanka Chopra went on to win hearts with her acting prowess and after reigning on the big…
Continue Reading »

Karan Johar

Stop asking me about ‘Shuddhi’, says Bollywood filmmaker Karan Johar

IANS Mumbai – Questions about the much-delayed “Shuddhi”, said to be on reincarnation and mythology, has left filmmaker Karan Johar a bit tired and fed…
Continue Reading »