Independent Online

Friday, August 19, 2022

Like us on FacebookFollow us on TwitterView weather by locationView market indicators

Taiwan school allows boys to wear skirts as it enforces new gender-neutral uniform

The school's decision to allow boys to wear skirts is seen as reinforcing the self-ruled island's reputation as a beacon of liberalism in Asia. File picture: Pixabay

The school's decision to allow boys to wear skirts is seen as reinforcing the self-ruled island's reputation as a beacon of liberalism in Asia. File picture: Pixabay

Published Jul 25, 2019

Share

Kuala Lumpur - Both

male and female students will be allowed to wear skirts at a

Story continues below Advertisement

school in Taiwan after it announced plans to drop

gender-specific uniforms on Wednesday, a move LGBT+ campaigners

said was a boost for gender equality.

The change, a rare move in Asia where traditional values

often prevail, came after male students and teachers at Banqiao

Senior High School near Taipei donned skirts in May during a

Story continues below Advertisement

week-long campaign seeking to break down gender stereotypes.

The school's decision is seen as reinforcing the self-ruled

island's reputation as a beacon of liberalism in Asia, which

Story continues below Advertisement

became the first place in the region to legalise same-sex

marriage in May.

Under the current guidelines, male students are required to

Story continues below Advertisement

wear trousers and skirts for female students, but the new dress

code - to take effect in the new academic year from August 30 -

will remove any mention of specific gender.

"It is to boost the students' autonomy in choosing their

uniforms while respecting their rights," the Banqiao Senior High

School said.

The school, which is located in New Taipei City, just

outside the capital, has over 2 000 students aged between 16 and

18.

Taiwanese education ministry officials were quoted in local

media as welcoming the school's decision.

"This is a progressive step that embraces diversity," said

Du Sih-cheng, the policy advocacy director at the Taiwan Tongzhi

Hotline Association, a non-profit that campaigns for LGBT+

rights.

"It will especially give transgender teenagers the freedom

to choose what they want to wear in schools," he said by phone

from Taipei, urging more schools to follow suit.

A global campaign to push for gender-neutral school uniforms

has gained traction in recent months.

Mexico City's mayor last month announced that students can

decide whether to wear skirts or trousers to school, stirring a

controversy in the socially conservative predominantly Catholic

country.

In Wales, the government said this month that it would no

longer have separate uniform codes for boys and girls under a

new policy due to come into force from September 1. 

Thomson Reuters Foundation

Related Topics:

Share