Cheaper School Uniforms in the UK

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Do you think it's right that some School/Academy uniforms are costing parents in excess of £200 and in some cases as much as £400 per child? Do you think it's right that uniform requirements vary so vastly from School to School? No then read on....

As a Mum to double trouble (twins), I won't pay silly prices for logo riddled School uniforms & I'm trying to get Schools & Government to see reason, please join me? I need 100,000 people to help.

Did you know that in 2012 the as was Office of Fair Trading (now CMA) wrote to Schools throughout the country warning them to change their ways with regards to School uniform availability, 5 years later & nothing much has changed, just another stark warning but will this do anything? So far it just means some Schools have a second expensive dedicated supplier.

We believe that it should be up to parents to decide where they buy a school uniform from & not the choice of the School or Board of Governors, some School Governors do not even have children at the School they are governing for, they may not even have children at all, so why should they get to decide the uniform our children wear or where we buy it from! This is a Nationwide problem & it's about time the Government did something. So no matter where you are in the Country please sign this petition, we are aiming to have the Government change the rules to benefit parents instead of the Schools.

Schools must no longer be able to just implement sanctions such as removal of clothing, exclusion or segregation for wearing non logo uniforms and the wrong material on the shoes. These rules re uniforms must be more uniformed themselves as they vary so vastly throughout the UK and we cannot choose our schools by their uniform code so the code needs to be more standardised, a common sense, practical to wear, cheap and readily available on the high street so to speak. No more only from our dedicated suppliers! Children have to be prepared for the working world I hear some disapproving parents comment. Employers don't have rules for rules sake they have them predominantly for health & safety reasons. Plus working adults have finished growing so a pair of shoes will last and they are not playing in them during break times, children are growing and often outgrow both shoes and uniform before the year is out! Such factors make treating this issue as preparation for the real world a joke. One of my twins was on his 3rd pair of School shoes before his 1st Christmas at School! We want the DfE to amend the current Government Uniform Guidelines which are largely ignored by Schools, we want them to make it mandatory for ALL state Schools/Academies to have a completely logo free uniform as standard. These changes would mean parents who want to purchase a logo uniform could still do so from the dedicated supplier, but those parents who do not want to purchase a logo uniform, could buy the logo free version from ANY retailer that sells the school colours. Logo uniforms can be as much as FOUR TIMES the price of the non logo option. Schools up & down the country are getting away with this rip off practice. Children are being threatened with exclusion or segregation if their parents send them to school wearing a logo free version, regardless if they look the same just logo free. Exclusion just because the logo is not on clothing is wrong and should not be permitted. Some schools even go as far as demanding logo's on both trousers and skirts, the PE kits too, where does it end? We believe this has gone far enough and want it stopped.

Many Schools only offer only 1 supplier & the quality can be shocking, it's NOT best value for money which is what the current Government Guidelines recommend. Schools that offer a second supplier (which meets the CMA rules) are no better as the second supplier is usually pretty close in price to the first one, therefore making it a pointless exercise. The only true way to bring uniform costs down is to allow parents to choose whether to buy logo or non logo uniform and not dictate where they must be purchased.

We see many of the children in our School wearing discoloured, ill fitting & often tatty uniforms due to the cost of replacing them being so high & the quality being poor. A more affordable logo free option could mean more families being able to afford to replace the uniform when they really need to, rather than sending their children to school looking shabby in an old, ill fitting uniform.

We also would like to see Schools permitting a better range of suitable shoes & colours and not just demanding black leather shoes. Having a choice in shoe colour and shoe type is relevant too, cost reasons, fitting reasons, the stores rarely offer children's black shoes in sales, the cheaper black shoes available from supermarkets etc do not come in half sizes or width fitting choices, meaning children often have to wear ill fitting shoes & they do not get replaced as often as they should be. Some schools allow black trainers some do not, yet they want kids to be active in break times that's a lot harder in rigid shoes, kicking a ball about or running around in the playground or field is not good for rigid shoes they get damaged and become uncomfortable, it's not about style it's about being active and fit for purpose. By offering an option of dark colours rather than specifying an actual colour would mean parents could afford the shoes that do offer half sizes & width fittings in the sales, we regularly see blues/browns etc in the sales for less than half price but not the black. My children are often complimented on their appearance, they wear logo free uniform and black trainer style shoes. The School Governors could not even pick mine out of a class photo as the ones not in proper uniform, so this goes to show how irrelevant some of the rigid uniform rules are at present set by the Governors.

We are not against a uniform, we are just against School's forcing their logo's onto us and onto so many items of the uniform, it should be the parent's choice whether to purchase logo or plain uniform, it should be the parent's choice on shoe colour within reason, we are asking for options, even employers do not stipulate exactly what make or model of shoes you must buy! Anarchy will not reign buy removing the School logo, or from blue shoes being worn instead of black! Exam results will not drop because a logo was not on the uniform! We are asking for a common sense approach to uniforms, a choice for parents of all financial abilities!

If a uniform is not readily available from a variety of retailers i.e. on the high street, so to speak, then the School should not be allowed to demand it as a uniform! That is just a back door way of forcing parents to buy from dedicated retailers at inflated prices.

Please sign this petition to give the freedom to all parents throughout the UK, of all financial abilities. If this issue does not affect you please sign anyway to help those who it does. Even working parents are struggling to pay for these overpriced uniforms.

We want the Government to change the Guidelines accordingly - Mandatory logo free uniform  = cheaper School uniforms!

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