Why a Melbourne girls school is making their youngest students only wear pants and shorts.


Melbourne private girls school Lowther Hall Anglican Grammar School has implemented a new dress code which sees students from Kindergarten to Year 1 only allowed to wear pants and shorts.

Then, from Years 2 to 12, students will be able choose from the school’s entire uniform selection which includes options for dresses and skirts.

According to a post from the Lowther Hall’s Facebook page, the decision was made in consultation with their students and done to encourage more psychical activity.

“Our Blinkbonnie House uniform (Kinder to Year 1), which does not contain any dress or skirt, caters specifically to the physical development needs of our youngest girls, and helps them to play and be active,” they wrote.

Speaking to the Herald Sun, the school’s principal Elisabeth Rhodes echoed a similar sentiment and said a school-wide audit found previous uniforms to be too restrictive.

“We know research that points to the fact that young girls aren’t as active as their male counterparts and we looked at things that might be inhibiting them,” she said.

“We wanted to encourage them if they wanted to hang upside down on the monkey bars or run around madly outside, so a change was needed.”

Here’s what the uniforms now look like:

pants school uniform rule
Image: Lowther Hall Anglican Grammar School.

The debate over whether female students should be able to wear pants and shorts, as well as skirts and dresses, came to a head in Victoria last year after the state government introduced a new policy which forced schools to give girls the option of wearing pants and shorts.

Despite this, private schools, like Lowther Hall, were exempt from the rule.

However, announcing the new rule today, the public reception has been largely positive with most parents applauding the change.

"Well done Lowther. So practical and the new Earlsbrae Blue is a delightful addition," read one Facebook comment.

"Love that you have so thoughtfully considered the impact that school uniform has on activity levels, particularly for girls," read another.

What do you think of this rule? Do you think more schools should implement this? Tell us in a comment below.

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