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How Times Have Changed: School Uniforms

General Info, Schools April 3rd 2017

School uniforms: we all remember wearing them. Were yours boring or something that you actually liked wearing? We remember wearing the classic long sleeve jumper over the polo shirt at both primary and secondary school. But how far back does this trend go? We’ve decided to look at how school uniforms have altered over the years…


How Times Have Changed: School Uniforms image 1

Image Source: Album1900

Just after World War I, education became a focus for the authorities. Almost 100 years ago, the uniform was generally smart with a strict dress code.

This specific school (imaged) continued to wear lightweight suits throughout the 20s, and each suit had a detachable collar. Around the same time, other prep schools began a uniform trend: colourful blazers. Caps were also popular for boys and remained to be so all the way up to the late 60s when demand started dying out.


How Times Have Changed: School Uniforms image 2

Image Sources: Ehow, Wisearchive

Children still attended education during World War II, although some schools decided to relocate to the countryside to be out of target areas. In the 40s, the school dress code was generally strict and of a smart manner.

The colours were usually quite bland, although this added to the formal style. Girls predominantly had to wear skirts with a blazer that matched, whereas boys wore white shirts with a tie, beneath a blazer or a jumper (depending on the school’s policy).


How Times Have Changed: School Uniforms image 3

Image Source: Flickr

In the 60s, school uniforms drastically changed in length. Boys went from wearing shorts to trousers and girl’s skirts were now above the knee. Blazers were also common in the 60s for both boys and girls.


How Times Have Changed: School Uniforms image 4

Image Source: Daily Mail

In the 80s, uniform policies seemed to become more relaxed. White shirts and polo jumpers became more common, although there were still plenty of schools that enforced smarter looking attire.


How Times Have Changed: School Uniforms image 5

Source: Classorama

Moving on from the 80s, the polo jumper with grey/black trousers or skirt sprang into a lot of schools in the 1990s. Within some schools, shorts were compulsory (which most students weren’t too keen on). Yes, they even had to wear them in winter!


How Times Have Changed: School Uniforms image 6

Source: Court Fields

Having the majority of my school life during this timeframe, I remember the uniform well. My school’s dress code was regularly monitored, with footwear and other accessories always the focus of attention. Whilst the school pictured above are wearing polo jumpers and trousers, there were many others around that opted for blazers.

Present Day

How Times Have Changed: School Uniforms image 7

Source: Tanbridge House

Nowadays, schools are concentrating on making school uniforms look smarter. For example, the school I grew up in has now adopted blazers into their policy. I believe this is a step in the right direction as it gives the students an insight into how to present themselves for potential future circumstances.

Do you agree? Let us know the uniform policy you had at school in the comments below!

Information Sources: Ehow, Histclo

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