Ontario will still teach ‘gender identity’ despite scrapping Wynne sex ed: Education Minister
TORONTO, July 16, 2018 (LifeSiteNews) -- The government of Ontario still fully intends to teach children about “gender identity,” despite its recent decision to abandon a controversial new sex education curriculum.
Doug Ford’s Progressive Conservatives moved to repeal former Liberal Premier Kathleen Wynne’s controversial sex-ed curriculum by September. Education Minister Lisa Thompson promised last week that Ontario’s schools will revert to the curriculum that had been in place since 1998, and that her ministry would consult with parents on more palatable changes.
Pro-family groups and parental rights activists accused the “radical” curriculum -- devised under the leadership of former deputy minister of education and child pornography convict Ben Levin -- of sexualizing kids at an early age.
The Wynne curriculum introduced homosexuality and gender identity in Grade 3, masturbation in Grade 6, and oral and anal sex in Grade 7, as well as suggesting that Grade 7 children carry condoms and Grade 8 children come up with a sexual plan for themselves. It also taught that there were as many as six genders.
However, on Monday Thompson revealed during a Queen's Park question period that she still intended for schools to teach children about gender identity and same-sex relationships, as well as consent, cyber bullying, and the dangers of sexting, The Star reports. CHCH adds that Thompson said more details would be forthcoming.
“We are going to be preparing our students and preparing them for the realities of 2018 and we’re going to be embracing what was being taught in 2014,” she said, clarifying that the “developing sexual relations” section was the only part of the latest curriculum being revised.
Supporters of the more radical curriculum blasted Thompson for allegedly caving to conservative pressure, but she reiterated that the consultation process for the controversial plan “was completely flawed.” Social conservatives faulted the government for not adequately seeking input from parents in making their plans.
Thompson’s latest announcement comes after a Sunday protest at downtown Ottawa’s Human Rights Monument, as left-wing parents and activists gathered to support the more sexualized curriculum.
“Children are going to suffer the consequences of a sex-ed curriculum that is not comprehensive and does not meet current societal needs,” said Amanda Jetté Knox, a speaker at the rally who claims her 11-year-old child is transgendered.
On Monday, The Globe and Mail published an op-ed by York University sexual neuroscience researcher Dr. Debra Soh arguing that it “should raise a red flag in parents’ minds” that “few people have pointed out how [its gender] teachings aren’t based in science.”
“I, too, was once a vocal supporter of the updated sex-ed curriculum, but watching how its unscientific claims about gender identity have spread so prevalently has dampened my enthusiasm,” Soh writes. “A curriculum that teaches gender fluidity is misleading and will impair a child’s ability to have an accurate understanding of the world.”
She went on to explain that while she disagreed with those who deemed the material age-inappropriate, “the level of outrage in response to Ms. Thompson’s [previous] announcement is not commensurate to the decision made [...] I have a hard time believing that families are really that distraught over the fact that their children’s sex-ed lesson plans are going to be less intensive.”
“The backlash is emblematic of a disdain for those who lean right politically, and a desire to rally against Mr. Ford for the sake of political divisiveness,” Soh declared. But it “brings us to the question of who gets to dictate how a child is raised – should it be the responsibility of the parent or the state? Sexual education cannot be blindly outsourced to the education system.”