2 At present, school uniform policy, including its cost, is a matter for a school’s governing body or academy trust to address. The Department for Education has published non-statutory guidance on school uniform.
3 The Department for Education’s advisory guidance was last updated in 2013 to give extra emphasis to the importance of cost considerations. The Department for Education’s advisory guidance makes clear that schools should give highest priority to the consideration of cost and value for money for parents.
4 In November 2015, the Government published the ‘Better Markets Plan’. This included a commitment to put the Department for Education’s existing school uniform guidance on costs on a statutory footing:
"The government wants to ensure that effective competition is used to drive better value for money and will therefore put existing best practice guidance for school uniform supply in England on a statutory footing" 1 .
5 This Bill will enable the Department for Education to make its guidance on the cost considerations of school uniform statutory.
1 Section 2.5, p11 (‘A better deal: boosting competition for families and firms’ available online: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/480797/a_better_deal_for_families_and_firms_print.pdf