EDMONTON, Alberta, 23 November, 2012 (LifeSiteNews.com) â€“ Alberta parents who support traditional values are breathing a sigh of relief after the Alberta School Boards Association (ASBA) rejected a proposal calling for policies to deal with an alleged â€śpervasive school-wide culture of homophobia, transphobia, and heterosexismâ€ť.
Sixty-two percent of the boards voted to reject the proposal at the ASBA fall meeting held on Monday.
The motion would have added language specifically singling out gay, lesbian, bi-sexual, and transgender students to an already existing anti-bullying policy.
Jacquie Hansen, president of the Alberta School Boards Association, said that the majority of trustees rejected the policy over concerns that it unnecessarily focused on a certain group of students.
â€śThe feeling in the room was we’d rather have a policy for all kids and that bullying shouldn’t be tolerated no matter who you are or what you have to deal with in your world.â€ť
She called media reaction to the motionâ€™s rejection â€śunfortunate,â€ť adding that â€śthis is being seen as anti-gay and that’s not what this is about.â€ť
â€śThis is about policy and this is how to best protect our kids,â€ť she said.
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Hansen pointed out that trustees had voted earlier in the day to accept a motion that promotes â€śequality of opportunity, dignity and respectâ€ť for all.
Garnett Genuis, Executive Director of Parents for Choice in Education, said that while he supports â€śefforts to combat bullying of all individuals,â€ť he felt that the motion â€śdid not contain the appropriate safeguards to ensure that faith-based schools and programs would be able to continue to teach their teachings.â€ť
Canada Family Action (CFA), which mobilized opposition to the motion, had stated that the educational bureaucracyâ€™s constant focus on homosexual and other sexual â€śorientationsâ€ť was creating division and conflict rather than the â€śsafe schoolsâ€ť environment they envision.
Brian Rushfeldt, CFAâ€™s Executive Director, had stressed that school policies that do not treat all children equal result in â€śdivisive policies which set children up for discrimination.â€ť
He noted that under such policies, children who â€śdo not cater to or agree with homosexual behavior have become targetsâ€ť for discrimination. â€śThat defeats what education experts say they want to accomplish.
â€śThe real purpose of such LBGT policy is to promote every sexual behavior except normal heterosexual behavior,â€ť he said.