WHEN it comes to school uniforms, some pupils like to push the boundaries of what is acceptable.
As part of Fabulous’ new back to school series, our secret school receptionist is revealing what teachers REALLY think about kids who flout the rules.
This week the receptionist, who works in a primary school in Yorkshire, sheds light on the items that staff hate your children bringing into the classroom.
She said: “As much as teachers tend to hate a non-uniform day, the wearing of said uniform can be just as much of a minefield.
“From sneaky accessories and tech to policy busting make-up and jewellery, students like to push the boundaries as much as they can and when schools do not get the support from parents it does tend to turn into a battle of wills!”
Boys are much better at sticking to uniform conventions although they tend to be much messier than the girls; shirts untucked and ties noticeably absent (normally found at the bottom of their bags).
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They do seem to get better as they move through school, and it is clear when they start dating – suddenly the corridors stop smelling like armpit and instead you are overwhelmed with the conflicting scents of a hundred liberally applied body sprays.
Girls on the other hand have the monopoly on things that teachers despise.
First up is the absolute staple of school life – the bag.
These can go either way; oversized, and they manage to knock into everyone and everything (careful next to the Bunsen burners!), or tiny, fashionable, bags that will fit a pencil and not much else.
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Another bugbear is the way girls manage to interpret the bottom half of their uniform.
Trousers have to be tight, and popularity seems to directly correlate with the tightness – the most popular girls’ trousers look spraypainted, so tight they probably can’t even feel their legs.
Skirts are far removed from the pleated knee lengths of yesteryear (luckily, as the ironing of them was a nightmare) and seem to get shorter as the day wears on.
Girls, school staff should not have to see the gusset of your tights.
Teachers are also frustrated by the latest nail and beauty fashions.
It is difficult enough to encourage students to use a pen and pencil in this age of texting / Snapchat / Instagram, but inch long nails in every colour of the rainbow certainly do not help. Similarly, looking at the eyelashes that some girls wear it does make you wonder how they manage to keep their eyes open.
Girls aren’t the only ones who believe that teachers are blind to the additions to their uniform.
Boys are big believers that a blazer is not complete without a bulky, contrasting coloured, hoodie beneath it.
It gets tiring asking every second boy coming through the door to remove them.
AirPods are another item that boys must think are invisible to anyone over the age of 25.
They are very obvious, being white and sticking out of your ears, clearly playing music because you are certainly not listening to your lesson.
Of course, the absolute bane of any teacher’s existence, and indeed that of the whole school staff, are mobile phones.
Honestly, bravo to those schools who have managed to successfully implement a zero- tolerance policy, or even better, an outright ban on mobiles.
The reason for this hatred of phones in school is simple: students simply cannot let go of their digital crutches, and it makes managing behaviour, and therefore teaching, so much more difficult.
From sneakily taken photos from inside the classroom to be shared on the GC (group chat for those over 40!), to the organisation, and subsequent filming, of fights outside – and for the most brazen, inside – school, social media is an integral part of our children’s lives.
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Texting home to parents has also become common, with the expectation that if the student tells mum or dad that they feel the tiniest bit unwell parents will immediately demand they are sent home.
Unfortunately, this is too often what will happen!
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