Parents split over any coloured shoes to school

Parents split over any coloured shoes to school

KUCHING: The recent statement by Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad that students were free to wear shoes of any colour, has drawn mixed reactions from parents here.

While some cited the importance of uniformity in school attire as a means of instilling self-discipline among students, others deemed the matter a non-issue and hoped that focus be put on improving the overall quality of education.

Housewife Safarina Suud, 33, said she believed it was important that students look neat while in school and that wearing different coloured shoes would be an ‘eyesore’.

“I hope this (decision) will not continue as seeing students wearing school attire with shoes of different colours show that there is no uniformity,” she said.

She added her preference was for students to wear white shoes as it would make them ‘look better and neater’.

Sharing Safarina’s view was Ahmad Sufian, 42, who said wearing uniformed school attire would assist in developing students’ discipline.

He said the Education Ministry needed to be firm in addressing the matter so that the issue can be put to rest once and for all.

“The ministry should make a firm decision on the matter. If the students are to wear black shoes, then just wear black. End of story,” he said.

Meanwhile, mother of three Janeth Albert Girik said she disagreed with the prime minister’s take on coloured shoes, and that the government ought to stick with the current black-shoes policy in view that the matter had already been decided on earlier.

At the same time, the 48-year-old said it was imperative that the government focus on raising the standard of education instead of wasting time deciding on the colour of shoes to be worn in school.

“The quality of the country’s education is more important than the colour of the shoes. So long as the students wear proper uniform and school shoes, there shouldn’t be any issue.”

As for offshore rigger Arvellis Machillies, he deemed the matter a non-issue, saying he saw no problem with students wearing their choice of coloured shoes.

“It’s more a question of wearing the right kind of shoes to school. As long as their footwear is comfortable and suitable for their outdoor activities, the colour should not matter,” the 28-year-old said.

Last Friday, Dr Mahathir, who is interim education minister, told the press that he was not bothered about the colour of shoes worn to school, and that he would not revert the policy on black shoes introduced by former education minister Dr Maszlee Malik.

The premier had said that as far as he was concerned, students could ‘wear brown shoes, black shoes, grey shoes, white shoes or any shoes’.

— The Borneo Post