INTERNATIONAL: Boys to be given opportunity to wear skirts at UK school

James Marshall
May 15, 2017

The administration of the United Kingdom leading private Highgate School intends to introduce a gender-neutral uniform, allowing male pupils to wear skirts, media reported Sunday. The proposal comes in the wake of the rising number of students who are facing issues with their identity as boys or girls.

At the moment, the school uniform policy dictates that girls can wear either skirt or pants with their blazer and tie, but boys can only wear pants.

But critics warn the rush by schools to implement gender-neutral policies being demanded by activists risked encouraging "copycat" behaviour amongst children, fuelled by social media and the internet.

Parents would be consulted before any decision is made final, Pettitt said, but he stressed that if some boys feel "happier and more secure in who they are" by wearing skirts, then "it must be a good thing". However, not everyone likes the idea of the proposed changes.

Another former, Benjy Fortna, 19, who's now a student at Oxford University, said he's proud of his former school for changing the uniform policy. The dress code for female students allows girls to wear trousers.

He confessed that some former student are against the new changes, saying "They write in and say if you left children to their own devices they would grow up differently and you are promoting the wrong ideas".

"We are asking them, should it be called uniform number one and uniform number two?", said head Adam Pettitt.

The youngest referrals to the clinic were just three years old.

Student groups are also calling for gender-neutral bathrooms, for boys and girls to play on the same sports teams and for teachers to use the gender-neutral pronoun "they".

It comes as schools across the United Kingdom seek a "totally trans-inclusive educational environment and curriculum" after Tavistock in July reported the number of students seeking to change their gender had doubled in six months, according to the Guardian. It allows pupils to select whether they are referred to by male or female names.

In Brighton College, a co-educational independent school, the distinction between boys and girls' uniforms were scrapped to accommodate transgender students.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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