The wrong trousers

10th October 1997 at 01:00
Children's express on school uniforms

Suzanne McAllister, 10, is in Year 6 at Mountfield Primary School in North Kenton, Newcastle

Wearing a uniform makes me feel more grown up. Only the older children wear one, so it makes me feel much older than the infants.

I started wearing a uniform in Year 3. We wear a blue jumper with "Mountfield Primary School" written on it. We have to wear a black skirt or trousers and a top underneath your sweater which you can choose yourself.

It's okay, but I don't like the trousers. They're horrible! They're really long and dead baggy. I hate the material too. Me and all my friends wear the skirts because they are better.

Schools like you to wear a uniform because it makes them look more intelligent. You have to wear one because it shows everyone what school you go to and that you're good. I feel like I should behave well when I am wearing my uniform.

My uniform cost Pounds 13.45, which I think is a good price. The jumpers are Pounds 6.50, but you can get the trousers and skirts from all different shops. It's cheaper in primary school.

When I go to the next school we have to wear ties and everything. I think I'll feel different about school uniforms then because I don't like ties.

My mum and dad think it's good to wear a uniform too because I don't wreck my good clothes. I wear my good clothes at the weekend when we go out.

I'd prefer to wear jeans to school. My ideal uniform would be a blue jumper with badges mounted on the side, a pair of blue jeans and a polo shirt. Pupils should help to choose what uniform they have to wear because it's not just the teachers who have to like it. We have to wear it. I think we would prefer to wear our own design, one that everybody would want to wear. Teachers should have to wear the school uniform as well because it's not just our school, it's theirs too.

James Fletcher,

8, is in Year 4 at Ring Cross Primary School in Holloway, north London

I remember trying on my school uniform for the first time. I didn't want to wear it. My uniform is a red jumper with "Ring Cross School" written on it. It's got a logo with two hands shaking over the world. I don't know what it stands for, but it looks good and it's colourful. We have to wear a white T-shirt, black jeans or trousers, and trainers or shoes. The girls' uniform is the same, except they wear skirts.

I was in the top infants when we had to start wearing uniform, and I like it now. Some of my friends still don't like it, and they want to wear their own clothes. But it makes you look smart when everyone is wearing the same clothes. I don't want to wear my own clothes anymore, because if you go on a school trip and you get lost you don't know if they can see you. If everyone's in uniform, you can find each other.

I think all schools should have a uniform, because you don't have to worry about wearing fashionable clothes. If you don't have a uniform people start saying "Look what I've got" and showing off. It's fairer if everyone wears the same thing. If kids chose their own uniform they'd choose silly stuff - big, baggy clothes that don't look smart.

Teachers tell you off if you don't wear your uniform, so I always wear mine. I'm proud of my uniform.

I prefer the uniform at secondary school because you get to wear a blazer. I've heard that when you do PE in secondary school, people steal your uniform. I don't think I want to wear a uniform if people are going to take it. I'd sooner wear a shirt and jeans.

Children's Express is a programme of learning through journalism. A charity, it promotes the views and investigations of young people aged eight to 18. Interviews by editors Caroline Abomeli, 15, and Curtis Anderson, 14; and reporters Katherine Faulkner, 11, Koiya Donovan, 11, and Duane O'Garro, 12. Photo of James Fletcher by editor Senab Adekunle, 15

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