After educating girls for over a century, a girls-only grammary school is making a major change.
I know what you’re probably thinking – in a world where girls are demanding to be included in things like the Boy Scouts, you’re probably thinking this school is probably patting itself on the back for being more “progressive” by dropping its “girls-only” policy and opening up its segregated enrollment to boys, right?
No, this “girls-only” school is dropping something else – the word “girls.”
Altrincham Grammar School for Girls in Manchester sent out an email to confused parents letting them know that their staff will no longer be referring to their all-female students as “girls” and will be taking on more gender-neutral language when talking to their children.
Funny enough, despite the ban, the 1,350-pupil school will not be dropping the word “girls” from their name.
The school claims that using what is referred to now as the “g-word” could result in pupils who are getting sex change operations being “misgendered.”
In fact, principal Stephanie Gill said the change came in response to “the challenges facing our students who are questioning their gender identity or who do not identify as girls”
While their stance on letting boys in hasn’t changed, she informed parents that they “may have noticed that we have moved to using gender-neutral language in all our communications with students and parents.”
She added: ‘We are working to break ingrained habits in the way we speak to and about students, particularly referring to them collectively as “girls”.’
The letter continues to say that “for many transgender students being misgendered can be very hurtful” and undermines efforts to show that “everyone is welcome” at their school.
“Staff have embraced these changes and are doing their best to implement this new policy,” she stated.
LGBT campaign group Stonewall said: “This step signifies a commitment for a world where all people are accepted without exception.”
Parents, however, were not having it.
One parent, who requested that they not to be named, said: “When I opened the letter I wasn’t sure if it was a joke or not. It seems a bit potty to me.
“They are talking about diversity, but it’s a girls-only school. How does that work?”
A local resident told reporters: “It’s ridiculous. We live in an age where we have to respect people’s views and if people have issues around gender and sexuality we have to understand that. But girls should be referred to as girls.”
Chris McGovern, of the Campaign for Real Education, said the action the school chose to take is just ‘complete folly’.
“The intentions are good, but children who have issues over their gender identity can be treated with respect without the English language being altered to accommodate them,” he said.