Before students arrive at Lakefield College School, they may have some preconceived notions about what an independent school uniform looks like. From movies to TV shows, there are countless popular culture representations of private school dress. For many years, independent schools across the country–including Lakefield College School–adopted a standard uniform comprised of slacks and a button-down for boys and a skirt or slacks with a blouse for girls. Though this uniform may have served a purpose at some point in time, in 2018, LCS began a process to review classroom dress with a survey of students and faculty to gauge what changes they would like to see. By spring of 2019, the school had struck a student-faculty team who worked collaboratively to identify a dress standard that would be more in line with our authentic learning and outdoors every day strategic priorities, that would promote choice regardless of gender and that would contemporize the pieces of dress available to students. Along the way, students asked us to prioritize clothing that could be worn outside LCS (value for money) and clothing that reflected our environmental value.
While the school has both a Formal and a Standard Dress, we don’t require students to abide by gendered clothing policies. Students are encouraged to select items that feel most comfortable to them.
Our Standard Dress (formerly known as Classroom Dress) appeals to different style preferences, activities, and genders. Students can select from a variety of LCS tops (sweatshirts, rugby shirts, lightweight athleticwear, quarter-zips, sweaters, button-down and polo shirts) from Top Marks Canada as well as our School Stores along with black bottoms (of any brand that meets LCS guidelines).
We want our students to feel comfortable while being actively engaged in experiential learning activities indoors and outside, which is why our Standard Dress includes options made from flexible materials that will move with our students as they learn and explore. We encourage students to select bottoms that meet their learning needs and specific fit, and that some are quick dry for outdoor and active learning.
Not only are our school clothes flexible for our students, but they were also designed to be accommodating to the environment. To remain true to our environmental values, we sought suppliers that met our expectations around environmental and fair labour principles. After many orders from suppliers and several try-on sessions by our students, we arrived at a range of pieces to make available through Top Marks and in School Stores and to recommend as a purchase from Mountain Equipment Coop (MEC). MEC was selected as a preferred supplier of black bottoms due to its commitment to sustainability.
We feel confident in arriving at a school dress that will benefit our students and faculty alike as they embrace learning comfortably, confidently, and prepared for any challenge that comes their way.
To browse Standard Dress items and shop online, you can visit our School Stores virtual storefront.