Ofsted criticises primary school: ‘Pupils do not understand impact of homophobia’

Illustrated rainbow pride flag on a white background.

Government’s education watchdog says personal development, behaviour and welfare need improving.

St Stephen’s (Kearsley Moor) CE Primary School in Lancashire has been marked down by Ofsted.

According to the education watchdog, children do not have ‘a good enough understanding’ of homophobia and LGBT relationships.

The school was marked ‘good’ in all other areas, but Ofsted inspectors reported: “Pupils have some awareness of different types of families and relationships, but their understanding of this type of diversity is weak compared to other aspects.

“Pupils know that homophobic behaviour, such as name-calling, is wrong.

“However, their understanding of why it is wrong, and the impact it can have on people’s lives and mental health, is much weaker than for other prejudiced behaviours, such as those relating to race, physical appearance, special needs or disability.

“Consequently, the well-being of pupils who might, for whatever reason, be on the receiving end of homophobic comments, is more vulnerable than it should be.”

Ofsted criticises primary school: ‘Pupils do not understand impact of homophobia’

Secretary of Bolton National Union of Teachers (NUT) Julia Simpkins added: “I applaud Ofsted for taking the issue of homophobia and different types of relationships seriously.

“Children’s understanding of these issues is important, especially as the vote in the referendum has left some members of our society feeling more vulnerable than they were before.”

Earlier this year, the government dismissed a report calling for LGBT-inclusive sex and relationships education (SRE) to be made statutory in all schools.

Education Secretary Nicky Morgan has now backed inclusive sex education in schools – as rumours intensify she will run to be Prime Minister.

A recent report found that half of all UK school pupils are being put at risk due to inconsistent sex and relationships education – while campaigners have warned that issues including sexuality, gender, consent and domestic violence are often not routinely covered in what SRE provisions are available.