Uniform reforms will give Warwick girls freedom to move

MOVING MORE: Allowing female students to wear shorts and pants to school could promote sports and activity among girls.
MOVING MORE: Allowing female students to wear shorts and pants to school could promote sports and activity among girls. Marian Faa

WARWICK state schools will be no longer be able to force female students to wear cumbersome skirts to school when an outdated school uniform policy comes under review.

In a bid to promote gender equality, education Minister Grace Grace has asked the department of education to bring the state's school uniform policy into the modern age by giving all girls the option to wear shorts to school.

Assumption College school captain Mary Higgins thinks it's a good move that will help girls feel comfortable in their own skin.

"Gender equality is very important in schools,” she said.

Full of energy and passion for sport, Miss Higgins remembers the freedom she enjoyed being able to wear shorts to school in her junior years.

Bringing pants into the realm of choice could encourage female students to be more active at school, Miss Higgins said.

"It will probably create less barriers to go and participate in lunch time activities,” she said.

"(When you have to wear skirts) there is always that changing from your skirt to your sport uniforms.

"Skirts are more comfortable I guess you could say.”

Miss Higgins said sport in itself was an important way of empowering female students.

"In today's day and age, there should be no reason why shorts and pants aren't made part of the school formal uniform,” Ms Grace told ABC radio on Monday.

"We want to make every student feel that they can comfortably choose what they want to wear within the rules of a formal school uniform, I think that really makes good sense.”

While the reforms will only affect state schools, Miss Higgins wondered whether the move would encourage private and independent schools to follow the lead.

"I think it is really up to the school's policy and whether they want to change how they represent their school,” she said.

"For me the schools have all provided great opportunities for boys and girls.”

Topics:  assumption college department of education education minister grace grace gender equality girls school uniform skirts warwick students

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