It is difficult not to have sympathy with parents from schools who are being hit by decisions on costly school uniforms.

Fulford School decided to consult parents and carers on upping the cost of its uniform, got a predictable response, and ploughed ahead anyway. Given this, it’s difficult to see the consultation process as anything other than a tick box exercise.

The real issue is why schools are jumping aboard the bandwagon that says school blazers and school crested trousers and skirts (eg Millthorpe) improve outcomes. There is scant evidence that uniform even improves behaviour. What is clear from the evidence is that strict/expensive uniform policies create more NEETS (not in education, employment or training) than simple, non-branded uniforms from local supermarkets.

Cllr Bob Webb,

Labour spokesperson for education,

Clifton, York