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The Contender
Pro (for)
3 Points

Should school students wear uniforms ?

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 8/6/2012 Category: Society
Updated: 4 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 4,494 times Debate No: 25022
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (3)
Votes (1)




Ok so I am completely new to this site . I have done a little debating on my high school team but that is all. So I won't be the strongest opponent you have gone up against but I will certainly try my best to make it a challenge.

Round 1: Acceptance/ proposal to change or dismiss rules
Round 2: Confirmation / and rule change if required
Round 3: Arguments
Round 4: Rebuttals, additional arguments
Round 5: Rebuttals, closing statements, no new arguments

1. If a word which can be interpreted in more than one way is used then a definition has to be given. Otherwise the most fitting explanation will be taken out of a dictionary.

2. No additional arguments or rebuttals are to be made in the comments. These will be counted as invalid

3. If studies are mentioned a source of set study is required.

4. Definition and studies may be questioned with valid proof. (For example if there was a study done study A and this is proven wrong by Study B and C. Argument on Study A is dismissed)

5. A minimum of 500 characters is required per round.

May the best man or woman win!


I Accept your challenge wvke,and propose no new rules
Debate Round No. 1


I want to thank Pro for taking this debate. As I mentioned earlier I will try to make it the best challenge I can and wish him all the best. I will state my opening argument in Round 3 so not to mess with the structure.

Best of luck TheMrkanyewest01 may the best man win.


Yes,were still in round 2 and heading into round 3 (Arguments) and i would like to thank my opponent for instigating this debate,my arguments and counterpoints shall be in the proceeding 2 round.
Debate Round No. 2


I don't know how to star the arguments on here so I am going to go back and do it the way I did in high school. I am sorry for any mistakes (structure wise) and always appreciate friendly advice. Anyway here goes.

e.g.: example given

Back talk: rudely answering

Study conducted by David L. Brunsma

and Kerry A. Rockquemore:


Hello everyone,

The reason I am doing this debate is to go against the motion that "School students should wear uniforms?” The first point I would like to draw your attention to is why schools use uniforms. The general reason why schools take on uniforms is to decrease criminal activity even in one of its smallest forms e.g. bullying. The idea behind uniforms in being a disciplinary tool is that students will make less distinction amongst each other and therefore there should be less conflict. But is this really true? According to Dr. Alan Hilfer the uniforms are more like a temporary Band-Aid because after a while what the students cannot express in their clothing they will express more in their attitude. Now let's consider this: “if students were to act out more in their behaviour than their clothes would this not cause more conflict?" Well from my personal opinion having gone to a school with and without uniform, I saw more distinction in the school with uniforms than the one without. Because the students who would wear attention seeking outfits, now actually physically looked for attention e.g. talked back to the teachers.

Another good point I would like to bring up is a study conducted by David L. Brunsma from the University of Alabama and Kerry A. Rockquemore of Notre Dame. What these men discovered in their study was that uniforms had no direct effect on substance use, behavioral problems or attendance. However a negative effect of uniforms on student academic achievement was found. So not only do uniforms not aid in discipline they would affect student’s grades. Now for a student to be in their best learning state they have to be: well rested, well fed and last but definitely not least they should be comfortable. Now with school uniforms that last one might become an issue because anyone who has worn a school uniform knows they are far from comfortable. Now I know from the uniform I wore that it was too cold in the winter and to warm in the summer. Now it is not just me who says that Uniforms are uncomfortable most students do. Just have a quick look in Google by typing: are school uniforms comfortable. Now as far as I saw the people claiming the uniforms were uncomfortable outnumbered the ones saying they weren’t.

Finally I would like to let you all know that in the next round I will be bringing up the issue of cost. Although Pro might claim that wearing a uniform is cheaper their is a little more to it than that. I want to thank you all for reading my first few points and I am patiently awaiting my opponents reply.



I would like to thank my opponent for responding,

Why should students where school uniforms?I think it's obvious why,There are various reasons to why students should wear school uniforms,The first being that it creates a sense of unity among the students the way a sports team creates unity among their players,students feel a sense of worth and that they are working towards a great cause.It also reminds students that there not at school to be a part of a fashion show they are there to learn.And it helps eliminate a socioeconomic barrier among students,students will no longer be distracted by the flashiest,trendiest and most expensive clothing since all their peers will wear the exact same clothing.Many countries that are considered high in academic achievement are those like Japan,Taiwan,China use School uniforms to encourage learning.
It also teaches students to treat everyone as there equal,and school uniforms also help to establish communication with students that otherwise would not communicate with each other.I would also like to state that School Uniforms help combat crime and violence in inner cities schools,I have attended inner city schools myself and can protest to,that violence can break out over a simple thing like attire.An example of violence decreasing would be that of Long Beach Unified School District which has conducted the largest and most prominent example of school uniform policy experiment in the United States,the experiment states that [1].The quantitative outcomes of the policy have been remarkable. Crime report summaries are now available for the five-year post-uniform policy period and reflect that school crime overall has dropped approximately 86%, even though K-8 student enrollment increased 14%. The five categories of school crime where comparisons can be made between 1993 levels and 1999 levels are as follows: (a) sex offenses down 93% (from 57 to 4 offenses); (b) robbery/extortion down 85% (from 34 to 5 cases); �� selling or using chemical substances down 48% (from 71 to 37 cases); (d) weapons or look-a-likes down 75% (from 145 to 36 cases); and (e) dangerous devices down 96% (from 46 to 2 cases; LBUSD, 1999). �€� Analysis of attendance figures has also provided interesting outcomes for the uniform initiative. In the fourth year that school uniforms have been required in K-8 grades, the percent of actual attendance reached almost 95%, noted as the highest point in the 18 years that the district has maintained statistics. Middle schools also registered comparable improvements in student attendance reaching almost 95% (LBUSD, 2002).
A similar study was done previously by the Long Beach Unified School District Showing as well decreases in violence.The study even garnished the support of former president Bill Clinton in his 1996 State of The Union address to encourage schools to adopt a school uniform policy.
I will now try to argue the validity of my opponents Brunsma and Rockquemore study,the study I have found out included no public schools and it also never included data from the same school before and after the uniform policies were implemented,The authors never provided how by what means they received their end.My final argument deals with cost,lets begin with the monetary cost according to Uniform Web,"Comparisons show that school uniforms cost significantly less than what most parents pay for unregulated school clothing. School uniforms are less expensive than other types of clothing. A student can easily be outfitted with easy-care, long-lasting uniforms for about $150.00 a year. This includes 10 to 12 items. The durability, reusability and the year-to-year consistency also cut costs"[2]That concludes my Argument.
Debate Round No. 3


I wish to thank my opponent for the swift reply and like to apologize for my late reply i had something unexpected come up.

Also on a side note i would like to ask my opponent to state the source of his study's. Personally I don't mind looking them up it just isn't fair on the readers to do half the work, I want to thank Pro in advance.

[1]cool : appealing
etc: et cetera ( meaning it goes on )
[2]LBUSD: Long Beach Unified School District

Hello everyone,

I would like to start this round by defending my study in saying that first and foremost public schools were included in their study.

" sample as follows: 51.9% in general track, 32.3% in academic track, 9.8% in vocational/technical track, 6% in other programs, 92% Public schools, 5.6% Catholic schools, 2% Private religious schools, 1.2% Private non-religious, and a small (less than 1%) percentage of private non-ascertained schools."

As seen above in the underlined section Public schools were included.
Also i would like to reply to where he says that he found no before and after study's. This is incorrent there were 4 followup's done in the logitudinal study of 1988. Proof of the followups can be found at;.

Which Brunsma and Rockqumore study was based upon. As seen in the passage below.

" This research empirically tests the claims made by uniform advocates using 10th grade data from The National Educational Longitudinal Study of 1988."

The authors came to their conclusion by doing their study. I don't think this requires more explanations

Now as i said the last round the argument i wanted to make in this round is about the cost. But seemingly Pro has allready brought it up. Which is fair enough but as i mentioned in the last round there is more to it than that. See all the students i know that wear a school uniform change when they get home. So keeping this in mind that means they are wearing two outfits daily. Granted they might not buy as much other clothes as usual but there are still going to buy "cool[1]" clothes to change into and to go out of the house. So you still have the cost of new clothes plus the extra washing because of the two outfits, thats extra electricity, water ,etc. So as I said its not that straight forward.

Another reason why I think uniforms aren't as effective as they claim to be on paper is for a few very simple reasons. First not all schools look that closely to how the uniform is worn. Which leaves room for people not wearing their tie or not wearing the right shoes, etc. Secondly most schools with uniforms still allow : bracelets , rings, watches,... Third something not as obvious stuff like cologne and perfumes . These three things all have one thing in common. THEY COST MONEY. Which partially makes the whole breaking of economical and social barriers ineffective. Because if you think about it not everyone is going to have hugo boss cologne or a DKNY watch. Which is still going to create those barriers. This to me is another clear reason that the school uniforms are just not that effective in breaking barriers and creating unity.

Last but not least I want to question the validity of Pro's study. The information provided by LBUSD[2] suggested that school crime was significantly reduced. During this period a mandatory uniform policy was established. Seemingly, the correlation between these two events is reason enough for Long Beach administrators to state that a causal relationship exists. However I don't see it that way. Because a closer examination of the Long Beach case shows that several additional reform efforts were simultaneously implemented with the mandatory uniform policy. These programs include a reassessment of content standards, a $1 million grant from the Edna McConnell Clark Foundation to develop alternative pedagogical strategies, and the Focused Reporting Project (Kahl, 1996). So I think they have no valid proof to point out a direct relationship between the changes and the uniforms being implemented. Which to me renders this study invalid.

I want to thank everyone who is reading this and I eagerly await the final round :D


Well,first I would like to apologize to my opponent because I did,in fact leave out my cited sources I don't debate very often and it does slip my mind,pardon.

Well,in the spirit of debate let us continue,my opponent brought up cost in this debate,Well let me just say that my opponent has contradicted himself,he said that having two outfits would be more expensive,well let's examine this.Like I said before School Uniforms are inexpensive,durable,and reusable and run about $150.00 a year,like my opponent said parents will now have the incentive to buy less brand name apparel meaning less income will be spend on clothing and money will be saved.Another thing that will be saved is time,time when going to store to store choosing which costly outfits to purchase,uniforms will solve that.On the utilities front those things are necessary for everyday human life,and shall be paid regardless of whether or not there are extra loads of laundry.
Well on the school policy side many schools have differential dress code policy,some have a strict dress code policy others do not I think that strict dress code policy should be appropriated to certain degrees.Like say in inner cities,if people bought a shiny watch to school that would obviously instigate crimes like theft.Plus I would argue that Schools discourage the bringing of very expensive items on school ground and it is very common sense I believe to not bring expensive items to school unless you want them taken.On the reinforcement side when I wore school uniforms in elementary school,the school took uniforms VERY,VERY,SERIOUSLY setting up school uniform monitors to monitor who was not wearing there school uniform,at the time I wasn't wearing mine so I told them I simply could not afford them,but they went so far as to purchase my school uniform.
As for your claims about the LBUSD study conducted in the year 1994,you never disputed the fact that crime was reduced,sure granted that school uniforms were not solely responsible for this dramatic drop in crime activity,but it sure was a contributing factor.As David Brunsma of the Sociology Department of University of Missouri, have said that the benefits ascribed to the implementation of the LBUSD uniform policy were logically attributable to other factors; such as increased school security, collateral attendance enforcement efforts, and in-class programs designed to bolster sagging test scores.[1] all these things in correlation with the school uniform policy attributed to the decrease of crime in that district.

One quick side argument that I forgot bring up in my last argument,you quoted Dr. Alan Hilfer that "uniforms are more like a temporary Band-Aid because after a while what the students cannot express in their clothing they will express more in their attitude" you went on to say "if students were to act out more in their BEHAVIOR than their clothes would this not cause more conflict?"but according to the Brunsma and Rockquemore study you cited,they found this out "Our findings indicate that student uniforms have no direct effect on substance use, BEHAVIORAL problems or attendance.So those statements contradict themselves have more ammunition for your Brunsma and Rockquemore study,in the following rounds.GOOD DEBATING.

Cited sources for current round:

Cited sources from previous round:
Debate Round No. 4


I want to thank my opponent of his mannered response and for stating his sources from the last two rounds.

P.s. I do apologise if this round is a bit all over the place but i am extremely tired i am only just after getting off the plane. So i would like to apologize to my opponent beforehand.
[1] x : unknown

So this being the last round i would like to expand a little more on the cost of the uniform.As my opponent claimed I contradicted myself in the last round. So I got my mother to sit down with me today and help me calculate the difference in laundry cost. Case A would be were i would were a uniform plus another outfit after school and case B would be were i had one outfit a day. Now I do stress that the image I am going to put up is what it would cost in my area this is only to give a rough idea what big of a difference there is.

As you can see in the link above there is a difference of $350. The reason that there is such a big difference is because when washing a uniform you always have to wash it in 2 go�s where as if your washing casual clothes e.g. a t-shirt ,a jeans, underwear,socks and a hoodie most of the time depending on colour these can be washed together. I threw in an few extra loads in the calculator for case B to account for these colour washes.

So let's line it out to make it a little more clear.
For a uniform+outfit for after school :
load 1 : the jumper + the trousers + the underwear + the socks
load 2 : the shirt
load 3: after school outfit
Dry cleaner's: tie ( roughly $3.50 each time. Let's say it has to be cleaned every two weeks for a year . 3.50*52= 182)

If you don't have a uniform:
load 1 : casual outfit

so that allready pushes my opponents $150 up to $682.
Now I am no expert but I'm pretty sure you could easily dress someone for +-700 a year.

As for my claim about the LBUSD study Pro was right I never disputed the fqct thqt crime was reduced. However although uniforms might have been a contributing factor we cannot be certain how large this factor is. So I just wanted to point out that those numbers put forward in the first round weren't sole based on uniforms. For all we know uniforms might have had next to no effect on those percentage or they might have had a major effect. Seeing we can never be sure of either of these I would like to point out that all we know is that the uniforms contribitude [1]x% to the drops in criminal activity,etc.

I would love to expand more on this topic sadly i have run out of time. I want to thank Pro for a very intresting debate. I hope i will have more opponents like him.


Well,I like to thank my opponent sincerely for a challenging debate,Thank You

Well,as my opponent has stated he believes that laundry costs are higher for school uniforms as oppose to regular clothing,I don't have a lot of knowledge pertaining to laundry costs,but I do have some differential points,I would like to make.First,my opponent failed to mention the frequency of his washing did he wash the uniforms every day?Every two days or perhaps every third day.If he did wash it every day that will add to his sum of cost,most people wash their school uniforms every two days as an account I have provided a website that testifies this is true.
My second point is that,I find that on case A there are 15 loads of laundry?are that many loads of laundry really necessary for "a uniform plus another outfit after school".And I would also like to mention that my opponent in his line out only listed 3 loads of the 15 loads on his chart pertaining to case A and 1 load of the 8 pertaining to case B.He also assumed that a tie would be worn,many schools don't use ties in their school uniform policies,I certainly being a former uniform user never wore a tie.The truth is this,the example my opponent has provided is way to personalized,he didn't take into account the differences that many people have in utilities cost,in some places the cost of electricity is higher,while in other places it may be lower that goes for water,gas etc. and his example did not speak to the overall use of school uniforms,There are differential costs for ever person that utilizes school uniforms.As for your claim that $150.00 dollars annually would ballooned to $700.00 dollars annually is not true,When I put the figure out there I did not include the Overall cost of owning a school uniform,just what the annual cost of purchasing the clothing items would be.
Now,on another topic I would like to argue (again) the Brunsma and Rockquemore study.I would like to argue that the study is quite old in terms of relevancy,I have provided a link to a [2]study that is more relevant,as relevant as 2009 oppose to your study conducted in 1988.The study shows test scores for math, reading, and language along with attendance rates and disciplinary infractions both before and after uniform adoption the study shows that uniforms may generate substantial improvements in all measures (to see this go to figure 2 on link provided) this challenges the Brunsma and Rockquemore study that claims "Our findings indicate that student uniforms have no direct effect on substance use, behavioral problems or attendance' and that "A negative effect of uniforms on student academic achievement was found" times change and my study indicates positive change in school uniforms.

Cited sources:
Debate Round No. 5
3 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Posted by RoyLatham 4 years ago
This topic is debated frequently on DDO. Searching for past debates would turn up a lot of useful sources and arguments.
Posted by TheMrkanyewest01 4 years ago
Gosh,I was sooooo tired in the fifth round,but I wanted to finish it.
Posted by wvke 4 years ago
I wish to apologize for the last round I'm sure there are a lot of gramatical mistakes i just didn't have time to tend to this i hope this does not make it to confusing.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by RoyLatham 4 years ago
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Agreed with after the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: For novice debaters, both sides did well finding evidence and making arguments. The Brunsa/Rockquemore study is bogus, but it's difficult to figure out what they did wrong. They attributed dramatic improvements in Long Beach to trivial policy changes. But in this debate Pro didn't refute the study adequately, so discipline improvements are not supported. Pro won the cost argument, and the "unity and focus" argument was not really answered. I goes beyond discipline issues.