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This morning I want to talk with you about what we can do to break hold of gangs and violence in our schools and what we can do to create an atmosphere in our schools that promotes discipline and order and learning I believe we should give strong support to school districts that decide to require young students to wear school uniforms Weve all seen the tragic headlines screaming of the death of a teenager who was killed for a pair of sneakers or jewelry or a designer jacket In Detroit a 15-year old boy was shot for his 86 basketball shoes In Fort Lauderdale a 15-year old student was robbed of his jewelry Just this past December in Oxon Hill Maryland a 17-year old honor student was killed at a bus stop caught in the cross fire during the robbery of another students designer jacket Clinton 2 Why are we attempting to mandate school uniforms for most elementary and middle schools students while at the same time excluding high school students Isnt it obvious by the Presidents own justification that the problem group is teenage students ages 15 and older The Department of Education in consultation with the Department of Justice and under the direction of President Clinton has developed the Manual of School Uniforms On February 24 1996 President Clinton signed a directive to distribute this manual to the Nations 1600 public school districts Clinton1 Although the president has issued the manual most of the school districts appear to have carelessly ignored his new proposal A recent national survey of 5500 elementary school principals shows that they feel school uniforms would help eliminate violence in high schools and that they arent really needed in elementary schools Stephens 14 Statistics show that incidents of fighting will decrease by more then 60 if uniforms were made mandatory Stephens 11 There is no question that school uniforms can give a feeling of school spirit school
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