Since the dawn of time almost, the strict academic dress code at Oxford University has been skirts and stockings for natal females and suits and bow ties for natal males! Fact! No arguments, the dress code was based strictly in natal sex not gender. However this has now changed. Oxford University have changed the rules to allow people to wear either or, natal males can choose to wear skirts and stockings, natal females can choose to wear suit and bow tie and obviously vice versa.
The changes followed pressure from the university’s Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Queer Society. “In future there will be no need for transgender students to cross-dress to avoid being confronted by invigilators or disciplined during their exam,” said Jess Pumphrey, the society’s executive officer.
This news story broke in July 2012 and was reported in the national UK press – interestingly the way the story was written by two papers made me smile.
In the Independent this was written – “…Under the new regulations students taking exams or attending formal occasions will no longer have to wear ceremonial clothing that is specific to their gender.”
Don’t they mean – “…they can now wear ceremonial clothing that fits their own gender identity?