Being able to design a school uniform from scratch has been a real luxury. It's allowed us to think about what would really work for our students, our parents and our identity, and design a solution that suits all three.
Our starting point was to conduct a focus group with secondary school teachers and parents to understand some of the issues around uniform both at home and at school. From this, we agreed upon some key principles for the design and implementation of the uniform:
- Smart – to allow our students to look their best both inside and outside school, and to be worn by them with pride
- Distinctive – to stand apart from other local schools in summer as well as winter, and to reflect our students' transition from primary school
- Practical – to enable our students to be comfortable and safe in different types of learning activity, from English and Science to PE and Drama, by allowing flexibility of movement
- Simple – to minimise distraction from learning for students and teachers
- Inclusive – to be affordable and simple, as well as accessible
As for our colours, from the earliest days of our brand identity we have had three key colours in our palette: grey, to link with the Archer statue, with green and purple as accents. We have carried this through into our uniform, using charcoal grey as our base, as this is smart and distinct from the dominant colours used by other local schools.
So, based on these design principles and colour palette, we have created a modern, stylish uniform for our 21st century students.
Our uniform comprises a smart striped shirt or blouse and a jumper, with charcoal grey trousers for boys and a choice of trousers or skirt for girls. It will offer comfort and flexibility in all different learning scenarios, and will retain the visual identity of the school in all seasons, even when the jumper is taken off in the summer.
We have also designed a PE kit made from top quality breathable fabric. This comprises a polo shirt, skort (a skirt over shorts, for girls), sports jersey and shorts. There is also an optional tracksuit.
We took equal care when it came to the supply process, running a competitive tendering process with three suppliers, which took into account price, quality and convenience for parents. As a result of this process we have signed a contract with Uniform 4 Kids in Temple Fortune. They supply many local schools and orders can be made in person, by phone or over the internet.