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The Voice of the Loy Norrix Community

Knight Life

The Voice of the Loy Norrix Community

Knight Life

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Cultural Comparison: Brazilian students compare their experience with fashion and uniforms to America and American schools

Credit: Rayane Said
João Pedro Santos is at school wearing a school uniform.

Editor’s Note: This story is part of the Global Ties Kalamazoo series published by Knight Life News. From Feb. 12-16, related content can be found on our website, Instagram and Facebook.

Everybody has their own style. Whether it be baggy pants or colorful hair, school is one of the many places where people can show off their unique style and individualism. 

Not every school gives students the same opportunity, however. Some schools in Brazil require students to wear uniforms and restrict what clothing students can wear. 

In America, the percentage of students wearing school uniforms in public schools is 20% according to the National Center for Education Statistics. 

But it’s not uncommon for students in both public and private schools to wear uniforms in Brazil.

Some students prefer having a uniform. In their opinion, it’s not as bad as it seems and does offer some benefits, like helping students look and feel professional. 

“My uniform wasn’t ugly, some schools have ugly uniforms, and some schools just don’t have uniforms and I think it’s not okay,” said Youth Ambassador Rian Fernandes. ”It’s important to have uniforms. It’s more professional to have uniforms and easier to identify students if something happened.”

But the rules differ from school to school, and between genders. 

“There’s different rules for students in military schools, you have to shave your head as a man and put your hair in a ponytail if you’re a woman,” said Rian.

To most, it would make sense to have to follow a guideline on how you look when attending military school, but some think there should be some exceptions. One of these people is Youth Ambassador Maria Eduarda de Souza Mendes.

“There’s a military school in Brazil where you can’t paint your nails, do your makeup, or do your hair differently. They want everyone to be the same,” said Maria Eduarda de Souza Mendes.

School isn’t the only place where people feel restricted from wearing what they want.

If you have a different style, people will stare at you in the streets and be like ‘what is she wearing?’ It’s really uncomfortable, especially in small cities,” said Maria Eduarda de Souza Mendes.

In the United States, it’s common to look around and see everyone dressed differently. Sure we have trends, but most people have their own individual style.

“I think every person here [in America] has more individuality. We have it in Brazil too, but here it’s more common,” said Maria Eduarda de Aguiar Silva.

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Alice Damashek
Alice Damashek, Business Manager
Pronouns: she/her/hers
Bello!! My name is Alice and I'm a Sophomore this is my first year in Knight life. The reason I am in Knight Life is because I like literature. In my free time I like to make art. I am really passionate about helping my community in any way I can as well.

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