Ashmead Primary School is a non-uniform school. A letter regarding the school’s position on this was sent to parents in January 2015:
Dear parents and carers,
At the October parents’ evening a small number of parents expressed a desire to introduce a uniform in our parent survey and as part of our consultation about revising Ashmead’s vision statement. Other parents were equally keen on us staying a non-uniform school so I wanted to take the time to write to you about this issue.
At Ashmead we have chosen to not have a school uniform and this is something all parents are aware of before they choose to send their children here. We expect children to be dressed sensibly and practically, ready to enjoy a busy day at school. This allows children to express their individuality and allows us to focus on teaching and learning.
Of course there are arguments for and against school uniform but on balance we feel that our current arrangements are the best for us.
Sometimes parents think that behaviour or learning would be better if we had a uniform. However, the research cited by organisations such as the Sutton Trust (which collates for schools the effect of different approaches) as well as the experience of those of us who have worked in uniform and non-uniform schools suggests that uniform makes no significant difference to behaviour or learning. In both these areas high expectations and strong relationships are crucial. I am confident we achieve this while allowing children to wear their own clothes.
A uniform could be argued to be better at producing a cohesive school community and at preventing children being singled out for wearing the ‘wrong’ clothes. However, our school has a great community feel already and children being able to express their individuality is a big part of this. We do not have any evidence of children teasing each other about their clothes being a big problem but if we did our first course of action would be to tackle a school culture that allowed this rather than rush to introduce a uniform. In schools where there is a uniform but a poor ethos there is still teasing about clothes and appearance.
Governors have recently considered this issue both in our Children, Families and Community committee and in the full governing body. They have decided that focusing on the introduction of a uniform is still not a strategic priority for the school.
So we will remain a non-uniform school and, I hope, a proud one.
We will keep this issue under review of course and I am always happy to meet parents to discuss any concerns they might have.
Sutton Trust link: http://bit.ly/1Dx4u3I