How to allow individualism when your kids wear school uniform 20

The school that the boys goes to have a school uniform policy and they are pretty strict with it.  Grey or black trousers, red or white shirts or polo shirts and a red jumper or cardigan.  They have to wear black shoes and PE kit is red shirts and a white T Shirt. I am a fan of school uniform for the following reasons:

  • Uniforms cost less overall
  • There is no worrying about what to wear each morning
  • Children are easily identified as belonging to that school
  • Encourages discipline
  • Uniforms can be recycled and passed down.

But I also feel that a uniform can detract from a kids unique identity,  So I do let the boys choose their own coats (within reason), school bags and their own trainers.

Encourage Individualism

Ways you can encourage individualism


  • Allow your children to make choices when they can
  • Set acceptable boundaries
  • Allow them to choose their own stationery
  • Let them personalise items such as their bags and pencil cases
  • Encourage difference, my boys wear funky socks and as a household we believe in socks not to have to be a matching pair

The boys school shoes lasted less than six weeks last term, partly down to them playing football at playtime on the MUGA (multi use games area), so when JD Sports asked if the lads would like to receive something from their back to school range they chose a pair of all black trainers each. The trainers they choose are perfect for wearing to school as they follow the uniform guidelines as they are all black.


This year the boys picked their coats from Get the Label. This was the first time I have used this site, but was really impressed.  Fantastic clothes at much lower than high street prices. Maxi got a fab Craghopper waterproof and a Bench coat and Mini a Sprayaway Jacket.  All were fantastic prices and  it allowed the boys to express their individualism.

I might have mentioned before that Mini wears glasses and again I let him choose his own.  When he is due a new pair I take pictures on my phone of him in the frames he likes and then he looks at them and picks which ones he prefers.

Another decision that I allow the boys to make is to choose their own haircuts.  Maxi still has longer hair and is more than happy with that, in fact his nickname is MOP and he embraces it.  Mini on the other hand likes his hair short and looks the current trend for hard partings.

I would love to know how you let your kids show they individualism.

THe Mad House

20 thoughts on “How to allow individualism when your kids wear school uniform

  • Cass@frugalfamily

    Bethan especially likes to stretch the uniform rules as far as she can get without actually breaking them. She wore leggings all Winter under her skirt and a pair of black high top converse that she got away with because they were black (although covered in teeny colourful stars). She doesn’t like to look like everyone else and does her best not to – strange as she’s actually really shy around strangers so I wouldn’t have expected her to draw attention to herself in any way x

  • Julie

    I’m with you on school uniform being a good thing – for exactly the same reasons. I’m a bit miffed that Finn’s new High School has dress down every Friday………he’s miffed though because they won’t let him wear shorts as uniform! That’s my boys way if being individuals – to wear shorts all year for school. Angus is allowed at primary but Finn is having to save his for dress down day. Islay wears gingham skirts that I made for her, similar to the gingham dresses girls often wear in school colours. And I’m like you with socks, they wear what they want! Juliex

  • Pinkoddy

    Gosh I never thought about it really. I think their personalities are how they will be individuals. Older 2 aren’t allowed long hair, and certainly wouldn’t get away with black trousers. They’ve seemed happy enough through school though.

  • Sarah Bailey

    We used to be really naughty at school and would wear our ties the wrong way around or really short and then pull bits out so it made a new patter all of its own. x

  • Emma

    For us, it was how we wore our tie that we used to be individual with! Backwards, short, long etc. My two don’t have a uniform at the moment, but I kind of wish they did! 😀

  • Kara

    Kian is 14 and is getting his own sense of style now, so am on the hunt for a decent jacket that will keep him warm and dry yet still look stylish and “in”

  • börnin mín

    We haven’t gotten to the stationary age yet – but I cannot wait for that!
    I’ve always taken mine out to choose their uniform and Kitty jazzes hers up with colourful hair bands!

  • Patent Attorney

    Though I think uniform is a very good idea, I certainly think they should allow for a bit of individuality, such as in jewellery etc. When I was at school I would always make sure to have an interesting bag, and that would often be commented on!

  • Foz

    Our school has just changed their whole uniform and have gotten so strict that they are now insisting on black socks!! Felt that was going a bit far……

  • Aisha from expatlog

    Here in Canada state schools don’t have uniforms – I guess the extremes in temperature (30 degree heat today on the first day back and windchill of -30 in the winter) make it impractical. One less expense…

  • Sarah MumofThree World

    Your school uniform sounds very like our primary school’s, although yours actually sounds more flexible than ours! Our kids are only allowed grey trousers/ skirts/ dresses (my eldest is allowed black at secondary) and the jumpers and polo shirts are badged. Trainers are a complete no-no – even plain black ones! My younger son also destroys his shoes in the MUGA!
    Thanks for hosting this fab linky.

  • Mari

    My two were so happy to get back into their uniform again this morning but they changed straight back into their princess gear when they got home though.
    Great Linky, so much to think about and so many tips

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