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Selecting clothes help children develop
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Editor, In last Wednesday’s Coastal Courier, I noticed a letter to the editor by a parent of an honor roll student in the Liberty County School System.
Let me first congratulate this parent for her child’s academic success. I have two children in the local school system who are honor roll students and I am very pleased and proud of their academic success.
In my letter that was published in the April 15 edition of the Courier, I wrote, “A school uniform policy would, without argument, rob a student of his individuality.”
After reading Ms. Wynn’s letter, I stand corrected. It seems there is nothing anymore that is “without argument.” What is an argument without a rebuttal? This letter is my rebuttal to Ms. Wynn’s argument.
It is true I live in a military town, a place where there’s an abundance of men and women in uniform. I really don’t understand why this abundance of uniformed men and women make my statement about uniforms fallacious or “shocking.”
In Ms. Wynn’s letter, she wrote, “Clothes do not make a person an individual anymore than checks make you have money in the bank.” She is correct. A person’s clothing does not make a person an individual and checks don’t put money in the bank, but choosing and wearing clothing does contribute to the development of a person’s individuality.
When a check is deposited into a bank account, if it is a legitimate document, it will increase the account balance and for all pragmatic purposes will “make you have money in the bank.”
Every morning before school, my children wake up and dress themselves in clothing they have chosen. This may seem to some people as an exercise in futility, but choosing their clothes is a very important exercise in which children begin to shape their identity. A uniform would deny all children this important exercise.
It is true children attending private schools have been wearing uniforms for decades but this does not mean a child in a public school should wear a uniform. I try to teach my children to do the right thing despite the actions of their peers. The public school system employees in Liberty County work very hard to educate our children and their hard work seems to be paying off. I don’t believe the same can be said for the private schools in Liberty County.
It is true many workplaces require individuals to wear uniforms, but it is not true these individuals maintain their individuality while in uniform. When someone puts on a team or corporation’s uniform, that action is done to identify with that team or corporation.
Education is not a team effort for children. They are taught in a class, but they are required to learn — and test — as individuals.
There is no doubt my children have probably been sent to school in a pair of khaki pants and a Polo shirt, but this was an action of choice. It is sad that next year my children and I will live in a county that will not educate its citizens if they don’t wear the right clothing.

John Corrigan
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