The Milwaukee School Board voted, 8-1, Thursday night to require student uniforms for all schools in the district, beginning this fall.Individual schools and individuals students will be allowed to opt-out of the requirement, but it is likely there will be far more students attending public schools in the city wearing polo shirts and khakis.School Board member Carol Voss suggested at the meeting that the vote would switch the “default position” for MPS students and schools from not requiring uniforms to requiring uniforms.Currently, about a third of the 150 schools in MPS have uniform codes. Participation is voluntary and ranges widely from school to school.MPS Superintendent Darienne Driver said uniforms improve the learning environment in schools and increase safety, improve discipline and enhance school unity.
About a dozen people testified before the board, most of them in opposition to the policy, saying it will stifle individuality and creativity among students.
MPS schools are expected to offer families $20 for each student as a start on purchasing uniforms.
I don’t know why the taxpayers need to give parents money for uniforms. Presumably, the parents clothe their children now. They just have to buy different clothes. Still, uniforms are a positive step. They eliminate a lot of disruption, division, and anxiety from the learning environment.