Transgender pupils will be barred from competing against opposite biological sex in PE


Transgender pupils will be barred from competing against children of opposite biological sex in PE lessons under new government plans

Transgender pupils are to be banned from competing in PE lessons against pupils of the opposite biological sex, new government plans advise.

The guidance, which is expected to be released within the next few weeks and will apply to all state and independent single-sex schools in England, aims to protect girls’ safety and ensure fair competition in sport. 

The rule will not be in breach of the Equality Act because there are exemptions for competitive sport and schools are allowed to provide same-sex services if ‘objectively justifiable’. 

Schools will also be told to ban transgender children from using toilets or changing rooms for the gender they identify with. 

Those who have changed their gender could be provided with alternative facilities where appropriate, the advice is expected to say. 

Transgender pupils are to be banned from competing in PE lessons against pupils of the sex they transitioned into. File image

Transgender pupils are to be banned from competing in PE lessons against pupils of the sex they transitioned into. File image

Schools will also be required to tell the child’s parents if they wish to change their gender, wear uniform consigned to the opposite sex or request they be referred to by different pronouns. 

Government sources believe that it is unfair to put transgender girls, who were born as a boy, in competition with biological girls. 

They used the example of rugby, saying that it would be ‘dangerous’ and ‘unfair’ given the average biological boy’s size and strength. 

‘Headteachers will be allowed to have mixed PE lessons where that is not such a worry — for example, tennis.

‘But when sport is competitive, or when safety is a concern, girls’ spaces should be protected,’ one said according to The Sun

In a statement to MailOnline, a Department for Education spokesperson said: ‘The Education Secretary is working closely with the Minister for Women and Equalities to provide guidance for schools in this area, following calls from schools, teachers, and parents.

‘This work is based upon the overriding principle of safeguarding children, and it will consider a range of issues.

‘We will be publishing a consultation on the guidance this term.’

The government's guidance is part of a push to ensure tight safeguarding at schools. File image

The government’s guidance is part of a push to ensure tight safeguarding at schools. File image

The advice comes as major governing bodies for sport have recently banned transgender women from competiting in female categories. 

Last month UK Athletics followed in the footsteps of World Athletics, whose president is Seb Coe, and world swimming body FINA

Elite swimming was the first sport to completely forbid transgender athletes from women’s swimming races if they went through male puberty.

The international sports federation for swimming said back in June last year that it was setting up an ‘open category’ which will separate transgender athletes to compete in a class of their own.

Also included in the new school guidance will be single-sex school’s power to reject transgender pupils.

The move came after school leaders and governors met with lawyers amid fears about discrimination claims from parents of transgender pupils if they refused to accommodate them.

A Department for Education source previously told the Mail: ‘Single-sex schools can refuse to admit pupils of the other legal sex regardless of whether the child is questioning their gender.’

The guidance is intended to clarify how schools should respond to children with gender dysphoria and comes after a dramatic increase in the number of children who claim they are trans. 



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