Teenage students petition PM to protect single-sex spaces in school

Five teenage girls have called on the Prime Minister to protect single-sex toilets in schools.

In an open letter, seen by The Mail on Sunday, the students argued that mixed-sex toilets were dangerous and urged the Government to fulfil its duty to ensure “toilets in schools are safe”.

In August, Equalities Minister Kemi Badenoch confirmed that every new public building in England will be required to provide single-sex toilets to protect people from having “their privacy violated”.

‘Intimidating and humiliating’

The girls, aged between 13 and 15, said there is “no justifiable reason to introduce dangerous and uncomfortable spaces into schools”.

They described mixed-sex toilets as “intimidating” and “humiliating” and said some girls avoided using them, “risking a urinary tract infection”.

It was important, they explained, for girls on their period to “have private spaces”, away from “potential shaming from boys”.

no justifiable reason to introduce dangerous and uncomfortable spaces into schools

One of the students behind the letter told the newspaper that girls using mixed-toilets at her school “feel unsafe” and find it intimidating “around boys from older years”.

Legal duty

The Mail on Sunday’s Sanchez Manning said that “it remains unclear whether the Government’s transgender guidance for teachers will clarify the issues over gender-neutral bathrooms in schools”.

And Labour’s Rosie Duffield MP commented: “I hear from school pupils and students who are really uncomfortable with this. They are simply asking for their right to privacy and dignity to be respected with the provision of single-sex spaces.”

A Department for Education spokesperson said that “schools must continue to meet their existing legal duties to protect single-sex spaces”.

Also see:

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