Thursday, August 14, 2008

School Shopping

Today was the day for school clothes shopping. At just under $300 to outfit two teens, I felt I did well. After 8 years in uniforms, the Rock Star has been under a normal dress code since last year. For him a few cargo pants and some decent tee shirts fit the bill nicely. Girly-girl, however is still under the Mandatory Unified Dress Code – which means chinos and polos, black, navy and khaki.

Now, all in all, I don’t mind the uniforms. While I don’t buy some of the arguments for them: that they lower crime in schools, decrease bullying, promote better concentration and grades, I do see how they can make schools safer by making outsiders easier to recognize. Overall it lowers Girly-girls wardrobe costs and makes choosing her clothing in the morning easier as she does not have to obsess over fashion.

In fact the only cons I find is that it violates the students’ freedom of expression and individuality. I’ve seen some of those “individual” outfits on teens around town and some of their choices are far from appropriate. Girly-girl and her friends have no problem showing their individuality with weird socks, jewelry and accessories.

I do wish more stores would carry uniforms for older kids, though. We hit Ross, Target and K-mart and managed to find what we needed, but it wasn’t easy. The selections in junior’s and women’s were dismal, but at least they were affordable. Girly-girl even wondered why people would pay $40 for a polo at Abercrombie & Fitch if all you were going to do was wear it to school. Happily I have raised a thrifty child!

I am sure at some point we will have to go to Claire’s and pick up dangly earrings and bracelets and such, but for now, my kids are dressed and I’m not broke yet.

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