At least 40 secondary schools have banned girls from wearing skirts in a bid to cater for transgender pupils, it has emerged.
Schools are opting for gender-neutral uniform policies under which boys and girls both wear trousers, while others are considering similar changes, it is claimed.
They have followed the lead of Priory School in Lewes, East Sussex, which scrapped its female uniform last September, also citing fears over the sexualisation of young women.
It comes alongside news that a leading private school is bringing in make-up experts to help pupils who feel anxious about their appearance.
Schools are opting for gender-neutral uniform policies under which boys and girls both wear trousers, while others are considering similar changes, it is claimed
Copleston High School in Ipswich is one of the schools which insists on 'plain grey trousers', placing skirts on a list of 'unacceptable items'.
A majority of pupils in the area now attend trousers-only schools with eight Ipswich schools instituting a gender-neutral policy, it is claimed.
Meanwhile Crawshaw Academy near Leeds is 'consulting on implementing a gender-neutral uniform (trousers only)', The Sunday Times reports.
And Phillips High School in Bury has announced that girls starting at the school this September will have to wear trousers with existing pupils adopting the new policy next year.
The move has been branded 'crackers' by one parent, who said there is nothing wrong with the existing uniform for girls.
Girls due to start Philips as Year 7s in the autumn term will not be allowed to wear the same navy knee-length skirts worn by existing pupils.
Diane Burdaky, whose daughter Annabelle is in Year 8, claims parents were never consulted about the changes.
'There was no letter or email. No word or consultation from the school at all.
Diane Burdaky, whose daughter Annabelle (pictured) is in Year 8, claims parents were never consulted about the change to a gender-neutral uniform policy
'I looked on the website and there was a notice saying all new students from September will have to