The impact of school uniforms on student attendance, student discipline, and student achievement

Vernell Z. Waymer Williams


Demands for educational accountability are increasing at the local, state, and national levels. Local schools and school systems, in their attempts to institute policies and programs to enhance performance, have discussed major issues that impact student achievement. Among those issues are student behaviors, school safety, student attendance, and school violence. To address these needs as well as concerns regarding the apparent lack of focus on academics, educators began to look at the use of school uniforms. Data on student attendance, discipline, and achievement were collected for the school years 1999-2002. A comparison of the data two years before and two years after the implementation of school uniforms was examined for possible effects. There were no significant differences in student attendance and 6 th grade ELA. However, statistically significant differences were found in suspensions, ELA grades 3-5, and MAT grades 3-6.