Schoolwear Association responds to Budget
Association pushes quality up the uniform agenda as schools are ordered to become academies.
By Laura Turner
23 March 2016
The Schoolwear Association has responded to the Chancellor’s announcement in the Budget that all state schools are to become academies by 2020.
“Legislation will be brought before Parliament shortly and it will be clearer how it might actually work,” says Schoolwear Association chair, David Burgess. “We will be looking at it closely and keeping our members informed.
“There are always developments in education that have implications for suppliers of school uniform, such as last autumn’s announcement that the DfE uniform guidelines would be made statutory.
“The Schoolwear Association continues to work with all those who have an interest in school uniform, including schools, suppliers, specialists, parents, government and other stakeholders.
“There have been many changes to schools during the past 15 years, causing all sorts of challenges, and this is another. Whatever system evolves, our primary aim is that children and students will start the school year with a proper uniform.
“It is possible that the change to academy status will result in at least some head teachers considering their school’s uniform. There is a lot of work to do to ensure everything goes smoothly.
“The school uniform market is a very competitive environment, which has brought great benefits for parents. Many of the main items of uniform are lower in cost than they were 20 years ago. We recognise that cost is an important element, but there has to be the right balance with quality, performance and service if uniform is to deliver the benefits that schools, parents and government all want in our education system.
“There are other announcements in the Budget that have implications for school uniform. Secondary schools in England will bid for new funding for extra activities like sport and art. A quarter of secondary schools to stay open after 3.30pm so durable, longer-lasting and comfortable uniform will be even more of a priority.
“We assure our members and everyone with in interest in school uniform that as education faces change, we will be working hard to encourage common sense throughout the issues that arise over the coming years,” concludes Burgess.
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