New guidlines aimed at protecting transgender pupils have been criticised for “ignoring the rights of girls”.
A document which details the policies proposed by the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC), seen by The Sunday Times, suggests pupils shouldn’t be separated by sex in schools.
It also recommends that pupils who choose to identify as another gender should be allowed to use the changing rooms of that gender.
The policy document adds that girls who are uncomfortable with the presence of a transgender girl should be given the use of a private changing room.
When playing sport, the EHRC says all students should wear netball skirts and tracksuit bottoms, with pupils allowed to choose whichever they feel most comfortable in.
Pupils should also not be excluded from playing single-sex sports such as team training and physical education - according to the document.
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The EHRC claims the new rules will not only protect transgender children but also those “who are simply exploring their gender identity”.
But campaigners such as Tanya Carter, of the campaign group the Safe Schools Alliance, said they were “appalled” by the suggestions.
“The EHRC has not listened to the voices of the concerned parents and teachers who would have to deal with the fallout if these policies are put into practice,” Ms Carter said.
However, David Isaac, chairman of the EHRC, said: “There are strong views and the debate had become very polarised.
“We are consulting with teachers, parents and various pro trans and feminist groups.”
The EHRC said in a statement: “This document is a draft.
“This will be an important document for schools to help them support all children and meet their legal duties under the Equality Act.”