The Ridiculous Uniform

Uniform is a problem for most people when they are at school, mostly because it is horrible. I don’t have a problem with my uniform, but I have had a history of problems with one supervisor who seems to have it in for me. Now, you may say I’m being paranoid and ridiculous but hear me out, the one time two other girls and I wore grey patterned tights I was the only one to be picked up for this by the evil supervisor, even though there is no rule against them. I have been picked up for wearing cardigans which are “too long” or “too short”, again, no rule specifying length.

The Saga of the Shoes

So, this week she has a problem with my shoes. Yes, they have a tiny heel, about an inch, but no other teacher has had a problem and I have been wearing them for over a year.

Originally, she had a go at me for my shirt not being tucked in, which is fair enough as that’s part of her job. Then, as I walked away, “Oh you’re wearing heels! Come back here!” I slowly turned back and walked towards her. “Yes miss, I know but I have been wearing these for over a year and no one has had a problem with them.” “Well probably no one has noticed” “Miss, I wear a skirt, they are pretty hard to hide.” “Whatever, those aren’t uniform, get a note from your head of year, now!” By this point the bell for the next lesson had gone and I was already late.

Now, my head of year is male, and anyone who’s ever asked a male’s opinion on clothes, will know the shrug and vacant look you get. I knew I’d get a similar reaction over my shoes. I went into his office, retold the whole story, got the shrug and vacant look as expected and am given the note.

That was Tuesday. When I got home that night and told my mum the school’s demand of new shoes, after much fuming, she gave me a note saying if there is a problem with my uniform then would the school please discuss it with her. I managed to get as far as Friday without coming across the evil supervisor, but at lunch she again demanded to know when I will get new shoes. When I show her the note, she says that she could not possibly call my mum as there is nothing to discuss and anyway it is my head of year’s duty to deal with her. So consequently, I have no new shoes, as its ridiculous to replace shoes that are perfectly wearable, and there is an imminent phone call between my mum and the school on the topic of my uniform. She is quite looking forward to it.

And That Skirt!

Another complaint I have had about my uniform is the horror that I may be wearing a “short skirt”. To be fair my skirt is an inch or two above the knee,but other girls in the year above me definitely wear theirs shorter but there is no rule saying the exact length of a school skirt. Acctually, I lie, there is a rule saying your skirt can’t be too long. In a school full of girls wearing burqas they are worried about people tripping over.

The only reason I am aware of these complaints is that one of the more senior teachers took me aside to say that there were some people with a problem with my skirt, but as long as my skirt didn’t get any shorter then there is no problem. This is one of my pet hates, when someone has a problem with me but won’t say anything about it to my face. However, what I feel makes this slightly funny is that the people complaining are fully grown adults. And I am 15. If they are intimidated by a 15 year old girl, then they really should reconsider their career choice.

I’m not having a go about having to wear school uniform, I think it is a good idea, however, we must remember that this a school in east London where 60+% of the school are on free school meals. The school seems to be very selective about when they remember this. For example, non uniform days have been banned as apparently the poorer kids feel forced to buy a whole new outfit but can’t afford it. However, the cost of new clothes is clearly ignored when the school demands a new pair of shoes. A friend of mine whose shoes fell apart on Monday brought a note explaining that they would be replaced at the weekend on Tuesday. She was told that if she did not have new shoes by the next day she would be sent home. Maybe the school needs to rethink what battles they fight in their uniform war.



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2 responses to “The Ridiculous Uniform

  1. Who is looking forward to that telephone call? Your mother or the “evil” supervisor?

    Personally, I’m not so sure so many have a “problem” with uniform. When I was your age (sorry to be patronizing, but put it rather down to that “vacancy” on clothes that comes from me being male) I should definitely have said the same – but being honest to God with you, I didn’t really mean it, and loved the thing. I just wouldn’t admit it.

    Now well past middle age, what was my school back in England has been overtaken by a different school, and the uniform I once wore is history. As indeed will the school itself now that the new one (or “academy” as they now insist on calling themselves) moves into brand new premises after Christmas. Everything that was my school will be demolished.

    And my point…. enjoy your youth while you can. One day you will wish you could spend just five minutes more with the “evil” supervisor, believe me. You will give anything just to relive a few of those precious moments. Yet those days will leave you, forever, and the irritations you now write about will seem so small that you will long to experience even them again – if only for nostalgia.

    Perhaps they will demolish your school one day too.. So, remember, life’s too short to get yourself bothered about so small things!

    • My mother was looking forward to the call. I’m not getting particularly bothered about the “evil” supervisor it’s just annoying to be commanded to buy new uniform because she insists they’re wrong. I wrote that post to vent annoyance and I thought it would be fun to write. I know life is too short to get insanely angry about things like that but you have to vent about small, insignificant things every once in a while.

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