School Uniform: France
French boys did not commonly wear school uniforms, however, through much
of the first half of the 20th century, elementary school boys wore school
smocksover there clothes, giving the appearance of a school uniform.
Nothing like the elaborate school uniforms common in England developed
in France. While state schools did not have a school uniform, uniforms
were generally worn in Catholic schools and at some private schools.
Unfortunately I have managed to collect very little information on French
school uniforms. I am hoping that a French visitor to this web site
will eventually provide some interesting information.
Available information on French school uniforms includes:
State schools: French elementary boys through
the 1950s wore smocks to school, almost always black smocks. I'm
not sure to what extent the local schools or even local.national schools
required this, but the practice appears to have been much to pervasive
to have been left up to indivisual parents to decide. The smock was
generally worn with short pants and often a beret.
Catholic schools: I have little information on uniforms
instituted at catholic elementary schools. Several private Catholic
secondary schools during the1950s-70s had uniforms of sweaters, short pants,
and white knee socks. The shorts and white knee socks became less
common in the 1980s.
Figure 1.--Private French secondary schools often had uniforms consisting
of sweaters, short pants, and white kneesocks..
Private schools: I have no infornation on private schools.
Many private schools were Catloic schools. The extent of secular
private education in France is unavailable.
Related Links: Careful this will exit you from
the Boys' Historical Clothing web site, but both sites are highly recommended
Apertures Press International
Project: Pictures at schools in different countries and a book on British
Apertures Press New
Zealand book: New book on New Zealand schools in progress
School Uniform Web Site
Informative review of British school uniforms with some excellent photographs
Related Chronolgy Pages in the Boys' Historical Web Site
[Late 19th century] [1930s]
[1940s] [1950s] [1960s]
Last updated: April 11, 1998