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School uniform - trousers for girls

(63 Posts)
trousersforall Thu 08-Oct-15 18:54:41

Hi Eveyone

I've had a very long running thread on here under a different name about my battle to get dds school to allow girls wear trousers. I have recently appeared on This Morning Itv to debate this, and there has been lots of press activity on the matter. A group of us have formed a pressure group on Facebook, trying to collaborate our efforts. If you support this campaign could you please add yourself to the group, as it's by having numbers we become powerful. There are links to all the press on there too. Thanks all

ALassUnparalleled Fri 09-Oct-15 01:29:15

Are you referring to a state or a private school? I actually would be very annoyed if this is a private school with a uniform policy which you are trying to undermine.

trousersforall Fri 09-Oct-15 07:40:41

It's a state school but I really think the same should apply across the board. Discrimination should not be allowed, state or private.

ptumbi Fri 09-Oct-15 07:41:41

Didn't you know the uniform code before you applied for that school?

fastdaytears Fri 09-Oct-15 07:49:11

It's a closer FB group and googling Trousers For All has got me nowhere.

So your DD goes to a school where girls can't wear trousers but she wants to. Is that the gist? Is this a new policy?

PerspicaciaTick Fri 09-Oct-15 07:51:39

There are no valid reasons why trouser-wearing for girls and women should be against the rules in any organisation. I wish you every success.

JassyRadlett Fri 09-Oct-15 07:52:04

Didn't you know the uniform code before you applied for that school?

Yes, because everyone has complete choice over where their children go to school, don't they? hmm

Or maybe it was the trade off - this is the best option, it's not perfect, we'll campaign to change the not perfect things when we're there.

Verypissedoffwife Fri 09-Oct-15 07:55:55

ptumbi so by that reasoning the op should just put up with the inherent sexism within the school because she knew about it before her daughter was allocated a place?

Verypissedoffwife Fri 09-Oct-15 08:00:08

OP I agree with you. The school my children attend had this policy when I went there back in the 80s. It was my generation that challenged it and won. That was 30 years ago! There are no schools that I can think of in my town that discriminate against girls anymore. From primary girls are allowed to wear trousers in every school in my town.

fastdaytears Fri 09-Oct-15 08:03:48

My school allowed trousers but in the most hideous style imaginable.

Thistledew Fri 09-Oct-15 08:06:44

My mum successfully campaigned to change the uniform policy when I joined my secondary school (back in the 90s).

She was a scientist working in a lab at the time and it was part of their health and safety policy that they had to wear trousers when handling chemicals in the lab. She asked to see the school's risk assessment of their own chemical handling policies, and how that could justify skirt wearing.

Another argument was that we were a very rural school and catching the school bus in winter by standing around on the edge of the marshes in a skirt in freezing conditions was ridiculous.

Nowadays the Equality Act should help you.

I really don't understand the attitude of "don't go to that school if you don't like the uniform policy". Why would you not want to challenge an out of date and discriminatory policy? We don't make progress by never challenging the status quo.

ALassUnparalleled Fri 09-Oct-15 08:34:44

Another argument was that we were a very rural school and catching the school bus in winter by standing around on the edge of the marshes in a skirt in freezing conditions was ridiculous

So thick tights and boots hadn't been invented then?

Verypissedoffwife Fri 09-Oct-15 08:43:48

Hmm well when it's very cold (and it does get VERY cold in my part of Yorkshire) I wear thick tights under my trousers.

fastdaytears Fri 09-Oct-15 08:44:49

We used to wear double tights to school. Very cosy! Also good way to hide ladders...

Thistledew Fri 09-Oct-15 08:48:26

Boots weren't in the uniform policy either, and there wasn't really sufficient storage to change them once we got to school. Although teachers did turn a blind eye to boots under trousers in the worst of the weather, you couldn't get away with them with a skirt. I remember wearing tights under trousers, and even the boys sometimes wore longjohns under their trousers, so no, thick tights would not have cut it.

Lurkedforever1 Fri 09-Oct-15 08:55:52

I think private schools should be able to choose, because parents aren't forced to choose a school with a uniform policy that they disagree with.
State where people often don't have a choice I agree girls should be able to choose trousers or skirts. I'm not in favour of a blanket rule saying no skirts though. Firstly because it's expensive and sometimes impossible to get ones that fit if you're tall. Secondly some girls are less self conscious in skirts. And thirdly at schools like Dds, plenty of girls choosing to wear skirts, often on the short side, doesn't seem to have effected their track record of girls doing well and moving into careers in stem subjects. Which tbh is more important to me as a measure of sexual equality than uniform.

Thistledew Fri 09-Oct-15 09:26:27

Really, Lass, how did you expect me to reply? To say "Ah, you got me, there was no good reason for girls to be allowed to wear trousers, we were just kicking up a fuss for the hell of it to be awkward"?

Time and time again it comes back to the same sad trope that women should not challenge the status quo unless it is for a very very good reason, and that just having a bit more choice, or wanting to do away with an outdated practice or idea is not good enough reason.

I find it ironic, given that women are supposedly the emotional, less rational half of the species, that in order to make any justification for change we are challenged to the nth degree to prove why it is logically necessary. On the other hand, most patriarchal traditions are justified by no more than "This is the way we do things, so why change?"

Rather than asking for reasons why girls should be allowed to wear smart uniform trousers, why not put forward the logic for why it is necessary for them to wear skirts?

TheVermiciousKnid Fri 09-Oct-15 09:30:21

The girls at my daughter's school were told recently that they couldn't wear trousers because they would look like boys... hmm

trousersforall Fri 09-Oct-15 09:33:13

It all comes down to the fact that it is blatant discrimination against girls that would not be allowed in the workplace so why should it be allowed at school. Here is an article I wrote on the subject this week

ChunkyPickle Fri 09-Oct-15 09:51:42

I'd be totally open to just letting kids where trousers or skirts whether boy or girl. Particularly if the uniform is a kilt (as it so often is).

Sure, there might be a bit of giggling for a couple of weeks, but it would all settle down I'm sure.

Gileswithachainsaw Fri 09-Oct-15 09:54:29

Good for you trousers I swear the MN sheep would comply with wearing traffic cones on their heads if a school felt like saying to hmm

It's discrimination plain and simple and shouldn't he allowed. it's trousers ffs.

multivac Fri 09-Oct-15 09:55:30


You have my support. It's a no-brainer.

AnnPerkins Fri 09-Oct-15 09:56:46

Nitpick as much as you like but there is no escaping the fact that the policy is plain sexist. Many women, and girls outside of school, always wear trousers and never put a skirt or dress on. Why on earth should girls be forced to at school? Because some people prefer the appearance of a girl in a skirt? confused

I'm a primary school parent governor and we review the uniform policy regularly. At the last review I suggested that whilst girls had the option to wear trousers the rest of the year, some might want to wear shorts in the summer, like boys do. There was some bafflement, even amongst the other parents, who thought the girls wouldn't want to wear them. But I pointed out that shorts are usual summer attire in the real world. They saw my point, we changed our policy accordingly and I saw several girls wearing shorts last term.

I've read your threads, OP, and seen you on Facebook. I wish you luck with your campaign. Although I can't believe it's still necessary in this day and age.

multivac Fri 09-Oct-15 09:57:06

<waits for some eager beaver to suggest that, really, if the OP's child is too precious to comply with basic uniform rules, she should homeschool (because that's what precious parents do), obvs...>

steppemum Fri 09-Oct-15 10:11:38

good luck with your campaign, I couldn't agree more, totally outdated policy.

Our school simply states black/dark grey trousers or skirts.

They allow trousers, culottes, shorts, leggings, dresses and skirts.

They look like they are all one school in uniform, but they can wear what suits them.

That is primary.
The secondary that we hope dd will go to has one uniform skirt and one uniform trousers, both in styles which will be very unflattering on dd. I would not dream of choosing the school based in uniform, that is the least of my concerns. But once there I will be pushing for more variety,

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