A SCHOOL which was hailed as the “coolest state secondary in town” has 40 children who do not identify with their gender.

Forty pupils at Dorothy Stringer High School - aged between 11 to 16 - do not identify with their gender assigned at birth while 36 said they are gender fluid.

This was part of a research by Brighton and Hove City Council’s Safe and Well at School Survey.

The data is published in the school’s equality information report. Last year, the Brighton school in Loder Road was praised by an education magazine, Tatler, for its liberal vibe and being “the best in town”.

Headteacher Richard Bradford said: “We are very proud of the equalities and inclusion work we do in school – we are proud of our diverse community and we work hard to support the needs of every child.

"When we support the students who do present as trans we listen to them and their parents and carers and wherever possible follow their lead.

“When a family approaches the school about a gender questioning issue we listen to their requests and support them in a way that is appropriate to the young person, family and wider school population.

“As a result of this support we are pleased that a number of trans students have successfully completed their secondary education with us.”

Labour MP for Kemptown and Peacehaven, Lloyd Russell-Moyle, praises the school’s efforts.

He said: “In the last years I have visited many schools in Brighton and they have support programmes for LGBT students and curriculum about gender diversity. It’s great to see schools are active in supporting students in their journey.

“No one should be pressured either way and to become something they do not believe they are.

“That means we must be supportive for those that choose a different gender that they are assigned at birth.

“There is of course a push back at the moment because when changes happen, it’s scary for a lot of people.

“The approach is to take those people with us on the journey and to show them the world is not going to change.

“We need to let people know that young men and women will not be forced into something they don’t want to be.

“Schools like Dorothy Stringer have demonstrated they show respect for everyone, and they have promoted safety and understanding.”

Organisations in the city have taken the lead in giving support to young children on gender identity.

Allsorts Youth Project has launched the UK’s first-ever group for ‘trans or gender-questioning’ children aged 11 to 15.

The group received £166,000 in public and lottery funding and runs awareness courses for state secondary in the city - including Dorothy Stringer.

The organisation also wrote the Trans Inclusion Toolkit which is used by schools and colleges in East Sussex to determine their policies.

It gives guidance for teachers and pupils on how to deal with bullying, transphobia and gender identity.