A fifth of British women were exposed to unwanted sexual contact as schoolgirls, a survey suggests.
According to the research from children’s charity Plan UK, 22 per cent of respondents reported having some sort of experience of sexual touching, groping, flashing, sexual assault or rape while they were ‘in or around’ school.
What is really disturbing is that more than 61 per cent said they never reported incidents to a teacher or another person in authority.
“Our findings show that schoolgirls have been suffering in silence for decades,” Tanya Barron, of Plan UK, said. “We know that these experiences can have a devastating impact on their lives.
“Unwanted sexual contact can affect a young girl’s self-esteem and educational achievements. It is extremely worrying to see that girls have been experiencing unwanted sexual contact in or around school since at least the 1940s.”
Some of the measures Plan UK are calling for include support for teachers to prevent and manage incidents of unwanted sexual contact in schools.