Call to relax sports dress code for 'body conscious' schoolgirls

School sports
School sports

Allowing teenage girls more flexibility in what they wear to take part in school sports could improve participation, the Sports Minister has suggested.

Tracey Crouch said there was a "drop off" in girls joining in with sports around the age of 14 when they become "far more body conscious", and that changes to what they wear could improve that.

Ms Crouch was asked by Labour's Alison McGovern (Wirral South) to "tell headteachers to stop making young women wear ridiculous school uniform for school sports", during Culture Questions in the Commons.

She said the "entirely cost free" suggestion to let girls "wear something comfortable" would make them "want to do sports".

Ms Crouch replied: "Alas, I don't have the power to tell headteachers anything but I'm sure the Secretary of State for Education will have heard her comments.

"What I do know is from all the analysis that has been done about women and girls in sport that we do see a drop off in girls at around about the age of 14 - it is a point where they become far more body conscious and actually having some flexibility in what they wear while they participate in sport may well be an answer to that."