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Parents in pyjamas

By Karisma Indra

Most of us would agree that the 21st century increasingly is a society based on appearances. People are judged within the first few seconds of walking into an interview room, they are judged by the quality of their clothes, the appearance of their hair, and even ethnicity. So should it really come as a shock that parents are now being judged by what they are wearing when they take their children to school?

This is the latest in a series of ridiculous costume-related headlines that have made the news including last year’s big debate: ‘blue and silver, or yellow and gold?’ It is not clear at first glance what is more ridiculous, the fact that a school is insisting on its parents being more formally dressed, impinging on their right to express themselves as they wish in regards to their clothing, or the fact that they have to insist upon it in the first place.

I will admit that a lot of the time waking up early in the morning to do the school-run with your children can be a trying task. It generally involves at least one tantrum, one person refusing to get up and one major headache for the parent. By the time parents have actually gotten their children ready, they may not actually have time to dress themselves – hence the pyjamas. This is perfectly understandable at 9am, especially in the winter. With this argument in mind it does seem a little unfair for a school to politely ask parents to also think about the example they are setting by turning up to school in their pyjamas, after all for many harried parents it’s a miracle they have even managed to arrive.

Of course, like with all mildly controversial topics, this news took Twitter by a storm, with people from several walks of life weighing in on the issue. Some on Twitter claimed that the school was trying to “impose middle-class values” on everyone else. Others complained that the school administration must not have enough to do if they are complaining about the state of the parents’ attire. Piers Morgan supported the school and stated that parents should never wear pyjamas on the school-run; perhaps Morgan needs to try doing the school-run on a daily basis before he weighs in on this particular debate.

Whilst fundamentally I believe that perhaps the response to this idea was partially justified given that parents perhaps have little to no choice in the matter of what they end up wearing on the school run, there is a bigger picture. I cannot condone the fact that parents come to meetings at school dressed in pyjamas and to assemblies in such attire. If you have to come to the school in a formal capacity or as a parent in an assembly, then perhaps you should actually think about getting dressed before you show up.

Leave your pyjamas at the school gates or in front of the classrooms and please be suitably formally dressed for all other school-related functions, thank you.

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