Ask Sam letter


To Sam

Genderfluidity At School

um i just need to know are my school allowed to ban me from changing anything about myself due to gender fluidity, so i'm stuck being a girl when all i really want to be is a boy??
Ask Sam


Hi there,

Being able to express your gender when you’re physically different can feel really difficult at times. It can be especially difficult at school. It may be hard to know what you’re allowed to do and what you’re not.

A young person going through gender reassignment has the right to not be discriminated against. However this doesn’t necessarily give you the same protection.

The school has the right to decide what you can and can’t wear. But that doesn’t mean that your school will ban you from changing things about yourself. It can mean that they have some control over what you are allowed to do though.

Not being able to express your gender in school can be really difficult. You could think about what might help people support and understand what it is you want to do.
Being able to state what you want calmly, clearly and confidently is a really important part of helping people to understand what you need. Remember, your school is there to support you.

Schools won’t always let you do everything. But this is because of reasons completely unrelated to your gender. When you’re worried about them saying no, it can be good to think about a back-up plan. Think about who might be able to support you.

Our page on assertiveness has some really good ideas about expressing your needs. When you’re thinking about how to explain to them what you need, think about different ways of explaining what being gender-fluid is like for you. And tell them what would be most different if you were able to express your gender identity.

For many young people coming out about their gender identity can be a really difficult first step. It’s important to remember that you don’t have to be alone. 

Think about how can support you. You could write a letter to that person to practise. Or you could even try coming out in the mirror. If you don’t feel like there’s anyone you can trust, you can talk to ChildLine. Talking to a counsellor at ChildLine can help you to think about what you’d most want to say to the school, and can support you no matter what you decide is best.

Take care,

Need help straight away?

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