Some arguments for school dress codes state that the practice promotes equality between male and female students and those from different economic backgrounds, improves the overall safety in schools and takes away outside distractions from the classroom, according to Fresno Pacific University. Opposing perspectives argue that guidelines on dress oppress individualism in students and do not offer a solution to larger issues involving violence and preparing students for the workforce.
In the public school system, dress codes are used to discourage focus on outside influences; on the less serious side, the difference between those who can and can't afford expensive clothing is eliminated, as stated by occupytheory.org. On the more serious side, school uniforms can improve safety in areas where gang violence is high by prohibiting gang symbols on clothing and making it easy to spot firearms by requiring students to show a belt line at all times.
On the other side of the coin, scholars argue that the practice was instituted as part of the education system's agenda to prepare students for the workplace, focusing on important skills and the appropriate way to dress. As many companies today focus more on individuality and steer away from conformity, dress codes no longer help and in some cases hinder a student's development.