The Australian Christian lobby has condemned the newly introduced gender-neutral uniform in a Sydney school. It objected to the school’s ‘rainbow politics’ that allowed male students to wear female uniforms.
Thanks to the changes, male students at the Newtown Performing Arts High School can wear a skirt to school. Most parents have welcomed the change. But Australia’s Christian lobby is fuming that the school’s decision is encouraging children to make “radical choices” in their lives.
However, the school at Sydney’s inner-west locality is proud of its progressive values. The changed uniform policy allows students to freely identify with the gender they like. Students can now call themselves as either male or female. Those identifying as a girl can also use the female toilets, reports The ABC.
Parents are seeing the change as positive. Maya Saric’s two children are enrolled at the school. She said students have been told that the “school has dropped gender-typing. The child can decide for themselves how they perceive their gender.” Saric said she has no objection to the uniform policy.
“They’re facing enough turmoil and change and crisis of their own. It’s not really relevant what colour trousers they’re wearing and whether they’re wearing a skirt or shorts,” she said.
Another parent at the Sydney School, Tony Ryan, also welcomed the change and said kids are feeling safer now. For students, the changes are the result of a hard won battle. They had been lobbying with the school’s administration to bring in gender-neutral uniforms, reports Stuff.Co.Nz.
“Our aim was to remove the un-inclusive gender labels from the school uniform, and make it so that anyone could wear any aspect of the uniform without having to go through a long and difficult process,” said Jo Dwyer, a student at the school.
He said prior to the changes, students had to get parental permission and notes from psychologists to wear cross gender uniform. That was not easy for many students who have unsupportive parents on changes relating to gender identity.