Yesterday I read the article the Register ran on the school uniform policy at Forest School. I had to wait a day before writing this post so I could calm down. I keep hoping that I won’t have to continue to talk about the school uniform policy being foisted on the residents of West Haven because parents will wake up and realize that having the City dictate how they should dress their children is insulting, unnecessary, and extremely controlling. I can’t be the only one that thinks that my child’s right to a pursuit of happiness guaranteed her under the Constitution should not be violated by the city mandating what she must wear to get a public education afforded her by the hefty taxes I pay in this town.
“West Haven school uniform policy working” is the headline. It has been just one month that the kids have been in school and already success is at hand? What does “working” mean exactly? That everyone (except the few poor families who can’t afford it) has kowtowed to the command and make their children wear the uniforms? Forest School principal Tom Hunt is quoted in the Register saying, “As the days go by, the compliance is greater and greater.” I’m a Star Trek fan and this reminds me of the Borg’s mantra “resistance is futile.” The Borg are cybernetic organisms that take over other species and “assimilate” them into the collective and connect them to “the hive mind.” Watch out kids, you will be assimilated.
Let’s keep in mind that Forest School is an elementary school. The oldest children are in the fourth grade and 10 years old. Are the kids there so out of control that the only course of action is to mandate uniforms like they are in jail? I simply can’t imagine that is the case.
The one thing I find interesting about the article is that the “school board had previously considered a uniform guideline for the entire district, but many parents fought it.” So the BOE decided to push it through at Forest. Why? Curiously that school has the highest percentage of minority students at 76%. By the way, that’s what I would call a majority. I can’t help but wonder if all the parents there – not just the vocal few in favor of the uniforms – feel comfortable voicing their opinions or making waves.
According to Principal Hunt, “I have no dissenters at all in the building.” That’s because my child no longer goes to Forest. But when she was at Forest for the first two days of school, she did not wear a uniform. I told School Superintendent Neil Cavallaro that it would take no less than a court order to force my child to wear a uniform. I guess we will have to see what the “data” shows from what I fear will be a very anecdotical rather than rigorous study. According to Hunt, the staff is “seeing a change in kids” and that the uniforms have a “calming effect, almost.” Really? And it’s all due to the uniforms the kids have been wearing for a mere 30 days. Just remarkable.
I can’t help but wonder about what hell will break loose when they try this at Carrigan, Bailey, and the High School.