Uniform Norms

Sacred Heart schools across the world vary in uniform in policies, level of strictness.


Koko Azuma (with permission)

High school third graders, the equivalent of a high school senior in the United States, from Sapporo Sacred Heart School in Japan pose in their winter school uniforms. The uniform varies seasonally, with a brown checked skirt and blouse in summer, and the same skirt with a sweater and hooded jacket and winter.

Asha Khana, Copy Editor

While Convent students are still struggling with complying to the revised dress code and uniform policy, students in many Network schools strictly adhere to uniform rules.

At Kincoppal-Rose Bay School in New South Wales, Australia, even if a student is wearing her uniform, not having a white ribbon in her hair warrants a reprimand, according to student Jasmine Tan.

“It’s so different being here not seeing everyone dressed the same,” Tan said during her trip to San Francisco. “If you are out of uniform at our school, you get a uniform slip and if you get three, you can get detention.”

Students not wearing the correct uniform at Sapporo Seishin Joshi Gakuin Sacred Heart school in Sapporo City, Japan cannot enter the school, according to Koko Azuma, who is will graduate at the end of the year.

“We can’t wear short skirts and we have to tie up our hair with black or brown [hair ties],” Azuma said over FaceTime. “Sometimes these rules are annoying, but I think I can accept these rules because I believe this is tradition.”

Many uniforms feature school logos incorporated onto shirts, sweaters, jackets and even socks.

“On our uniform, we have our school logo, the school’s beautiful church so we are very proud of it,” Sofia Barilari, who is in her last year at Istituto Sacro Cuore della Trinità dei Monti in Rome, said over FaceTime. “It makes us different from others.”

Josephinum Academy of the Sacred Heart in Chicago similarly includes the four stars from the city’s flag in their school’s logo, stressing they are apart of the Sacred Heart Network in addition to the outside Chicago community, according to Julia Sosnivka (’16) by phone.

Unlike San Francisco, some schools require summer and winter uniforms, often with heavier clothing for colder months.

“In summer, we wear a blue dress that goes to our knees and a white ribbon in our hair with our hair up, and a hat,” Charlotte Byrne, who also attends Kincoppal-Rose Bay School, said during her visit to San Francisco. “In winter, we wear black tights and our tunics that have to go to our knees, along with the hat.”

At Sacred Heart Schools Chicago, plaid green skirts must be worn with plain white polos possessing no brand names during early fall and late spring. During the colder months, students must wear black tights with plain white button down blouses. The guidelines are strictly enforced, according to Alex Good (’15).

While some schools alter their dress code and uniform policy more frequently, uniforms at many schools have remained a defining characteristic.

“Our uniform is very graceful and classical,” Azuma said. “In 50 years, it has not changed. We honor this school uniform.”