The headteacher of one of the country's top state schools says that parents should not treat their daughters as "little princesses".
Nicole Chapman, the head of the Chelmsford County High School for Girls - which had the 13th best A Level results in Britain last year - says that children need to be criticised as well as praised in order to prepare them for the realities of life as an adult.
Mrs Chapman told ITV News that "little princesses" tend to be protected from the world by their parents.
– Headteacher Nicole Chapman
"They will become young women and they will have to face challenges. They should know that life has challenges and they should be equipped to face challenges."
She was speaking after a visit to the school from a top academic.
Dr JoAnn Deak, author of "Girls will be Girls" spoke to parents, pupils and teachers on a two-day visit to the school.
She warned that parents "tend to go overboard on praise", adding that that can make girls "feel precious" and that they’re "the centre of the universe".