I have a discrepancy with my child's school because the new statutory guidance states that if schools use branded items they must be clear why it is needed. My Child's school requires logo on the trousers, jumper and blazer. 3 logos seems excessive to me, I wrote emails and had no response. These uniforms are more expensive than if getting non branded items from a non school wear shop and the school only gives two options of supplier to purchase from. When informing the school, the only response I had was over the phone and it seemed wrong, they told me it doesn't apply to academies, however I spoke to DfE who said it does apply to academies.


This means the following actions need to happen before parents seek to purchase or acquire uniform items in summer 2022:

  • changes to the uniform policy which do not fit with these exceptions, such as removing an unnecessary branded item

Is this a common problem across schools and what can I do to push my son's school into following these new legislations?

1 Answer 1


Firstly, we need to correct some of the terminology in your question. While you are right that what you have linked to is "statutory guidance", that is not the same as "new legislations". Legislation means law passed by Parliament, while guidance can be issued by any body authorised to do so by legislation. Guidance may or may not be legally binding depending on what the underlying legislation says.

In this case, the guidance is made under Section 551A(1) of the Education Act 1996. Section 551A(3) provides:

"The appropriate authority of a relevant school must have regard to guidance issued under this section when developing and implementing a school uniform policy for the school."

This means that the guidance is not legally binding in the sense that the school authority is not obliged to do what the guidance says. However, the authority is legally obliged to "have regard" to it. This means they must consider it and take it into account when reaching a decision. They can depart from the guidance but in that case they should be able to explain and justify their reasons for doing so.

A challenge would need to be by way of judicial review and you would need to establish that they failed to have regard to the guidance.

A strongly worded letter pointing out their legal obligation under the Act, together with a threat of judicial review proceedings, may be enough for them to take you seriously without actually needing to go to court.

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