Education watchdog Ofsted have criticised faith schools in the UK for failing to teach pupils respect for diversity, in particular the lack of education on LGBT+ issues. Attitude reports.
However, according to a report in The Sunday Times, private primary school will be handed an opt-out scheme under new plans.
Initial proposals said that acceptable standards require “active promotion of respect for other people, even if they hold views, choose to follow a lifestyle, or have protected characteristics, different from a pupil’s own or those prevalent in the pupil’s immediate community.”
But following lobbying from faith schools, the requirement has been watered down and the government’s unpublished response will reportedly allow independent primary schools not to be failed by Ofsted for not teaching LGBT+ issues.
Professor Alan Smithers of Buckingham University told the Times: “Whether or not young children should be taught about LGBT issues and gay families in schools has been a battleground for ages.
“This looks like a government U-turn. Jewish, Christian and Muslim groups have bitterly resisted the requirement to teach alternative lifestyles, with protests and placards. If this loophole is granted to independent schools, there will be a big push for this in state primary schools too.”
Please tell us your thoughts in comments or via Twitter ~ Tamsin
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