UK: Primary school writes to parents to explain that their child’s teacher will be changing gender

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A Church of England primary school has written to parents to explain that their children’s teacher will be changing genders from male to female.

St Mary Magdalen’s School in Accrington, in the North of England has said that Nathan Upton will be known as Lucy Meadows from the New Year. She teaches children in the final year of primary school, aged 10 and 11.

The Daily Mail has published the letters to parents and has posted photographs of angry parents brandishing the letter on its website.

The school’s head teacher Karen Hardman said that Miss Meadows has her full support. She told the Daily Mail: “This is a personal matter for our staff member, who has our full support, and we are all working together to ensure it has the least impact on the smooth running of our school.”

In a statement, Miss Meadows said:”This has been a long and difficult journey for me, and it was certainly not an easy decision to make.
‘I’d now ask for my privacy to be respected so that I can continue with my job, which I’m committed to and which I enjoy very much.”

Wayne Cowie, who has three sons at the school is quoted by the Mail as saying that: “All of a sudden he is going to be coming to school after Christmas as a woman.

“They are too young to be dealing with that.”

Another parent said: “I’m deeply concerned because I feel that having to deal with transgender issues at the age of six or seven is not age appropriate.

‘It’s not something I would talk to my children about at this age.”

Paris Lees, editor of transgender magazine META, told “It’s wonderful to see a valued teacher supported by the school. It’s a shame her privacy has not been respected by the Daily Mail and other newspapers, as this story serves no public interest. The parents at the school have been informed of this deeply personal decision. The case, then, for intruding on this individual’s private decision, during a no doubt vulnerable period of her life, is questionable at best.”

Ms Lees, who is also a columnist for GT magazine added: “Some parents may not feel ready to talk about transgender issues to their young children – and that’s understandable. But the reality is that transgender people do participate in public life, and there’s little to be gained by pretending that we don’t exist. I wish Miss Upton well, and her class too”.