Parents Threaten To Withdraw Hundreds Of Children From Second UK School Over LGBT+ Lessons

A second UK primary school is facing daily protests from parents who oppose LGBT + lessons for their five to eleven year old children.

Angry families are threatening to withdraw around 400 children from another Birmingham primary school saying they are too young to learn about about lesbian, gay and transgender relationships. Parents also want the headteacher to resign.

The Independent reports: Parkfield Community School, another primary school in Birmingham, suspended its “No Outsiders” programme, which uses story books to teach about same-sex couples, after hundreds of parents reportedly withdrew their children from class amid weekly protests.

A petition is due to be handed into Anderton Park Primary on Wednesday calling on headteacher Sarah Hewitt-Clarkson to resign and for the LGBT+ inclusive education to be suspended.

Protesting parents will then meet on Thursday to decide whether to withdraw their children.

Mr Afsar told The Independent: “If our letter or petition is not listened to then we will go forward with a mass withdrawal of the school. At least 400 students [would be withdrawn]. Unfortunately the headteacher is putting us into a bracket of homophobia and she is not wanting to talk. She is not helping the situation at all.”

Speaking last month, Ms Hewitt-Clarkson, who has been subjected to chants calling for her to resign, said teachers and parents have called the police repeatedly after feeling harassed by the daily protests during school pickup. 

Staff have been given a phone number for a counselling service in the school in the wake of the protests, which have left children in tears and staff feeling “incredibly intimidated”, the head said.

Parents across the country have been leafleting against the government’s decision to make relationships education compulsory in primary schools and relationships and sex education compulsory at secondary schools in England from September 2020.

The curriculum guidance, which a large majority of MPs backed last month, encourages primary schools to teach children about different families, including same-sex parents.

Under the reforms, parents will not be allowed to withdraw their children from relationships classes and from the age of 15, students can opt into sex education regardless of their parents’ wishes.

The headteachers’ union NAHT is to write to school leaders making clear they have a legal duty to teach about same-sex families in primary schools and about sex education in secondary schools.

But the union will urge them to do this sensitively and to involve parents in discussions to explain lessons.

Paul Whiteman, general secretary of the NAHT, said: “Schools have a duty to eliminate discrimination. The Equality Act places an obligation on schools to talk to pupils about the differences between themselves and their peers.