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Big Kids

19th Jun 2019

Japanese schools are making all of their uniforms unisex, should we do the same?

Melissa Carton

Do you think that Ireland should follow their example?

Japan has announced that it intends to make all school uniforms unisex in the near future.

The move is being made in the hope that it will make the uniforms more inclusive and comfortable for all students.

With most Irish schools also requiring students to wear a uniform, should a similar approach be used here?

Some schools in Ireland have already changed from traditional uniforms to unisex tracksuits but many still retain the old gender divide when it comes to what their students wear.

In my secondary school, we were lucky enough to have trousers as part of our uniform and only ever had to wear our skirts for formal occasions.

This kept us warmer in the generally cold Irish climate and was, to be honest, a lot more comfortable than the long heavy skirt.

My son is now attending school and the little girls in his class, come hail, rain or snow, still have to wear a skirt which I think is just ridiculous.

I remember being in primary school and hating my uniform during winter. It didn’t matter what tights I wore underneath my pinafore, my legs would still be freezing anytime we went out to play.

At a time when we’re asking for clothing stores to become more gender neutral, why is it that we’re still ok with the clear gender divide in schools.

Some people argue that while the girls uniform is colder in winter months it’s much cooler than the boys uniform in the warmer months.

In that case why not just have trousers for all students in the cold months and shorts for all students when the weather is good.

Having the same uniform for both genders also means that older siblings, regardless of their sex, can pass down their uniform to a younger sibling. With the rising costs for most families sending their children to school every year this would be a massive financial help.

Some schools don’t use uniforms at all but this has the pitfalls of children competing with each other over who has the trendiest clothes.

It also means your child, especially in their teen years, spending ages choosing what to wear rather than just throwing on their uniform.

I definitely like the idea of a uniform for school children but think the traditional uniform needs to be redesigned for the modern day child’s needs.