The Dell Primary School in Chepstow, Monmouthshire have caused a massive uproar from parents after they suggested girls as young as four-years-old should be wearing 'modesty shorts' in an effort to curb 'inappropriate attention from members of the public.'
Little girls to be held responsible?
For the school's head teacher, Stephen King, the proposal for young school girls to wear cover ups under their uniforms is a way to make sure that they remain safe and protected from potential predators. In an email posted on the school's facebook page, King wrote:
While we do not want to give children messages that they are responsible for the actions of others, we cannot stand by while children’s actions may attract inappropriate attention from members of the public.
But some parents believe that this might be sending the wrong message to young girls. While precaution is always welcomed, for them, accountability must be taken from those committing wrongful actions—not by infant children who have minimal understanding of sex and consent. One parent said:
It is shocking that girls as young as four are being asked to cover up. It suggests their pants and what they wear are a problem.
Support form child protection services
However, child protection lead at the National Police Chiefs Council, Simon Bailey, believes the initiative proposed by the school might be more beneficial in the long run. In a statement, Bailey explained that:
If a school wants children to wear modesty shorts so that they feel confident, I am supportive. My view is that anything that can be done to ensure young girls feel more secure has got to be good news, even modesty shorts, but the culture in schools has got to change at the same time.