Asda has earned plaudits from customers and the media after becoming the first UK supermarket to sell a full range of school uniforms tailored for children with specific needs.
The lifestyle website GoodtoKnow and various mainstream media outlets reported that Asda has launched its new Easy On Easy Wear collection as part of its George brand. Parents can choose from a wide range of items from school shirts, trousers, skirts, shorts, jumpers, and dresses for their youngsters with prices from as little as £2.50.
In designing the garments for children with specific or sensory-sensitive needs, Asda said it has “undertaken extensive research with customers and charities to ensure our clothing is suitable” and will make it easier for parents who are buying school uniform.
The new range has been introduced in response to a survey carried out by the supermarket that revealed nine in 10 parents admitted they get “distressed or upset” when trying to either dress their children or watch them try to do it themselves.
Asda found that children take nearly twice as long to get dressed wearing traditional clothing if they have specific needs and they put it down to the fact that most school clothing is designed with neuro-typical children in mind.
Caroline Hicks, head of schoolwear at George, said the brand “received a few letters from customers asking us how we could support their needs, focused around independence and easy to wear clothing.”
She said: “These customers supported us as we developed the range, and have given us incredibly valuable feedback along the way.”
She added that 71 per cent of children with autism attend mainstream schools: “We know that these children want to look the same as their peers, so we have designed the range to look just like the rest of the school clothing we offer.”
GoodtoKnow reported that features which normally make dressing problematic for children with specific needs include:
- tight necklines
- hard to-do-up buttons
- itchy labels
- irritating seams
- uncomfortable fabrics
- non-elasticated cuffs.
By comparison the Asda Easy On Easy Wear school clothing provides:
- buttons with easy close fastenings
- softer thread on seams
- elasticated waistbands
- care instructions printed on fabric instead of labels
Selina Maycock of GoodtoKnow wrote: “There’s enough for parents to worry about when making sure school uniform is Covid free, but what’s even better is that despite all of the above tweaks to the uniforms, the items look the same as what is sold in Asda’s regular schoolwear line.
“M&S currently sells an easy dressing uniform range but it is limited to t-shirts, shirts, trousers, skirts, and socks.”