Reply To: Parental opt-out
What a brave mum opting out of ‘Pride Parade’ at Primary School
I saw this story in the Metro:
“Mum says primary schools shouldn’t give LGBT lessons without parents consent
A mum has said that primary schools should not be allowed to educate pupils about the LGBT community without parental consent.The woman explained she found it astonishing that pupils would be taught what lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender mean before the children had been given general sex education lessons. The mum, who wished to remain anonymous, said Heavers Farm Primary School, on Dinsdale Gardens, in South Norwood, had not asked parents of pupils if they would be happy for their children to be taught lessons on the subject.
She said: ‘My Year 4 son is just far too young to be learning about all of this. ‘He came home the other day talking about lesbians and transgender people and I was so shocked.
‘They haven’t even started sexual education classes yet, but they’re being taught all about LGBT. ‘I’m all for diversity and for children to learn about it, but not in Year 4 when they are incredibly immature. ‘My son has learning difficulties and subjects like this are very hard for him to understand, and I’m sure he isn’t the only one.’
Susan Papas, Heavers Farm’s head teacher, said the lessons have been taught as part of a ‘Pride Month’ celebration which both Heavers Farm and its sister school Selsdon Primary are running. Ms Papas said: ‘Both of our schools are celebrating Pride Month as part of our continuing work on equalities and challenging stereotypes.
‘The children have been learning about this in many different ways, this includes Black History Month, learning about the Suffragettes to commemorate 100 years since women won the right to vote, and most recently learning to have ‘pride’ in ourselves and our families, and showing respect for families and people who differ from our own. ‘We have a number of children in LGBT families, and we feel that it is important that they feel valued in our schools. ‘This work forms a key part of our federation’s vision and values.’
Ms Papas added the Pride Month celebration is running to promote ‘fundamental British values of democracy, the rule of law, individual, individual liberty, and mutual respect and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs’. ‘We are not teaching this as part of our Sex and Relationship Education (SRE) programme, and as such we do not need to seek consent from the parents,’ she said.
The mum said she is particularly distressed about the school holding a ‘pride parade’ because she believes many families may not agree with this kind of event for religious reasons. ‘I know there will be Muslim families who would find the idea of taking part in such an event a very difficult thing to do,’ she said. Ms Papas said there is absolutely no intention to cause upset or distress to any pupil or parent at the school by organising this event. ‘We are planning a ‘pride parade’ on June 29, 2018, to which parents have been invited. This is planned to be a celebration of what makes the children proud,’ she said. ‘This can be what makes them proud about themselves and or what makes them and their families special. ‘The children have been making banners to represent this and they will carry these banners on the parade.
‘Children will also have a chance to share their work with their parents on this day. This is an inclusive, celebratory event focused on the what makes the children feel proud about themselves and their families. ‘Our local MP Steve Reed is supporting this event and will be at Heavers Farm on that day.’ Despite Ms Papas’ comments, the parent still believes the children are ‘far too young to be taught’ LGBT lessons, and said she had no intention of taking her son to the parade. ”
Good for her I say!
It’s hard to believe this is happening!