Rishi Sunak asked to condemn schools simply for supporting trans kids

Prime minister Rishi Sunak

Prime minister Rishi Sunak has vowed to “protect children” after being asked to condemn schools and teachers simply for supporting trans kids.

During Prime Minister’s Questions (PMQs) on Wednesday (24 May), Sunak was asked by disgraced MP for North West Leicestershire Andrew Brigden: “Does the prime minister agree that it’s completely inappropriate for schools to encourage young people under the age of 18 to socially transition, for example, by changing their names and their pronouns.”

Bridgen, who was kicked out of the Conservative Party for comparing Covid-19 vaccinations to the Holocaust, claimed that social transiting is happening in schools without parents consent or “even knowledge in breach of parents human rights”. 

He called on Sunak to instruct the Department for Education (DfE) to “order schools to stop indoctrinating our children and to concentrate on their duty of care to protect them”. 

Social transitioning means when a trans person changes their name, pronouns, clothes, haircut or bathroom they use to match their gender identity.

Rishi Sunak: ‘It is absolutely right that schools are sensitive’

Tory PM Rishi Sunak explained in a feeble yet chilling response: “I’ve been very clear that when it comes to matters of sexual education it is absolutely right that schools are sensitive in how they teach those matters and they should be done in an age appropriate fashion.” 

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He added that the DfE is reviewing statutory guidance and curriculum for schools that will “tackle this particular issue” due to “cases raised with the government and others where this has not been the case”. 

He added: “I don’t think that’s acceptable. We must protect out children and that’s what our new guidance will do.” 

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Transphobic dog whistles

Use of the phrases “grooming” and “indoctrinating” when referring to the LGBTQ+ community have been adopted by right-wing bigots in a bid to stir up moral panic.

However, the tireless use of such phrases is backed up by zero evidence, with research conducted in 2022 finding that 94 per cent of trans kids who socially transitioned still identified as trans five years later.

Further research found claims that adolescents come out as trans to “flee LGB-related stigma” or due to “social contagion” are “not supported by data”.

Teachers concerned ahead of trans inclusion guidance

Education secretary Gillian Keegan told PinkNews at the end of 2022 that new guidance on trans inclusion in schools would be published at the start of 2023. 

Calls for more precise guidance followed Keegan being “deeply concerned” about reports of “inappropriate lessons being taught in schools”, with the aim of the relationships, sex, health and education (RSHE) statutory guidance to stop pupils from being taught “contested and potentially damaging concepts”. 

The proposed guidance, which is being spearheaded by Keegan and controversial equalities minister Kemi Badenoch, would recommend ‘triggers’ – such as a pupil changing their name, pronouns or a “boy wearing a skirt” – to help schools decide whether or not to out a queer pupil to their parents.

But some teachers are concerned that the guidance isn’t in students’ best interests, with one stating that it will work at “safeguarding Tory interests” rather than protecting vulnerable children.

In May, a case brought by the Bad Law Project saw a group of parents sue the DfE for failing to protect their children from so-called “trans ideology”.

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