SUTTON Centre pupils left behind their jeans and trainers and donned a new uniform for the start of the new term after the school introduced uniforms for the first time in nearly four decades..
Unlike other schools across the district, Sutton Centre, which opened in 1973, has never had its own uniform.
The decision to introduce a uniform policy followed lengthy discussions with both staff, students and a group of parents - and school officials say that it has been welcomed by most parents and pupils.
Head teacher Simon Martin said: “The uniform is smart, practical, inexpensive to buy and easy to maintain.
“It will also support the sense of identity and pride in the school that parents and students have told us they want.
“A school uniform promotes a good working atmosphere, equality and community identity.
“It encourages students to ‘dress for success’, to feel pride in the school and feel part of the school community.
“Our students have achieved the best ever overall results in the recent GCSE and AS/A level examinations with 100 per cent gaining five GCSEs and a large group of our Year 13 students moving forward to higher level education.
“We know that the introduction of a school uniform is another positive step forward for this vibrant community education college.”
The uniform is currently being worn by pupils from year seven to 10 this year and it will be worn by those in year 11 next year. The sixth formers will not have to wear a uniform.
Meanwhile, the new uniform received a thumbs up from some of the year nine pupils now wearing it.
Jake Harvey said: “You don’t have to worry about what you are wearing and you are part of the community. It’s nice to see a sea of purple.”
Sophie Carroll said that it made choosing what to wear each day ‘less stressful’, while Tiggy Stickley said: “If someone does something wrong outside of school, they can be identified. It’s easier for the teachers as well.”
Jade Harvey says: “We could vote for what colour we wanted - there was red, green, purple. Everyone got to contribute to it.” But she added: “It would be better if we had a blazer and a tie - something more formal.”
The uniform though has attracted some criticism with one group being created on social networking site Facebook opposing the introduction of uniforms.