Nottingham all-girls school will not admit transgender pupils – Labour MP blasts move

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Nadia Whittome, MP for Nottingham East, accused Nottingham Girls’ High School of hiding behind the Equality Act, following its decision. She also warned the new policy may also be unlawful and called on the Girls’ Day School trust to work with local organisations over the matter. She said: “The trust is hiding behind the Equality Act as a reason for this policy not to admit transgender girls.

“But the Equality Act itself is clear on this, there’s a provision in it that allows single sex schools to maintain their single sex exemption while also admitting pupils of the opposite sex in exceptional circumstances.”

“What isn’t so clear and what lawyers are concerned about is that in fact the trust’s new policy is the one that could be unlawful.”

Explaining its move, the trust claimed the decision is to ensure it remains a single-sex school.

In a statement to ITV, Cheryl Giovannoni, Chief Executive Officer of the Girls’ Day School Trust, said the school will also support any pupil who is transitioning or wishes to do so.

Ms Giovannoni also said any student exploring their gender needs space and time to do so.

She said: “It is important to state first and foremost that the underlying principle of our policy is to offer a supportive educational environment to those students who are exploring their gender identity or in the process of transitioning.

“Our trans students are welcome in our schools and our policy primarily sets out ways in which schools can support them.

“A trans student already at our school can remain at the school for as long as they wish to do so. Young people exploring their gender identity need space and time to make decisions, free of pressure.

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“The school has a responsibility to support a trans pupil and ensure measures are put in place to enable them to remain at their school.

“We will work together with them to make the best choices for their long-term wellbeing.

“GDST schools are able to operate a single-sex admissions policy, without breaching the Equality Act 2010 on the basis of an exemption relating to biological sex.

“Under current laws and guidance, the GDST believes that an admissions policy based on gender identity rather than the legal sex recorded on a student’s birth certificate could jeopardise the status of GDST schools as single-sex schools under the act.

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“We will continue to monitor the legal interpretation of this exemption.”

On Nottingham Girls’ High School’s website, it states it is a school “where girls learn without limits”.

It adds: “We’re shaping a new style of education that smashes stereotypes and gives girls an extraordinary start to their futures.

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“Pupils achieve excellent academic results, driven by modern teaching methods that are proven to support long term success and wellbeing.

“You’ll see that our exam results are always superb.”

The Girls Day School trust has been approached for comment by

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