Roger Godsiff, Labour MP for Birmingham Hall Green, has been widely criticised by Labour party colleagues and local groups after appearing to side with protesting parents at Anderton Park Primary School. A group of parents are objecting to a curriculum programme called No Outsiders, aimed at achieving objectives in the Equality Act 2010. The lesson plans, based on 35 selected books, covers issues include gender and gender identity, religion, sexual orientation, disability and age.
Godsiff, who voted against gay marriage in 2013, has also declared that four- and five-year olds are too young to learn that some children have two parents of the same gender. Godsiff’s remarks are counter to those of his own party; fellow Birmingham MP Jess Phillips has expressed support for LGBTQI+ inclusive education and has also visited the school.
Incorporating LGBTQI+ inclusivity into our teaching is something colleagues at the University of Birmingham have been working on: Dr Nicola Gale and Dr Nicki Ward have produced a best practice guide for LGBTQI+-inclusive teaching design. Yet, the University still has some way to go, not least its repeated refusal to fully protect LGBTQI+ staff on its Dubai campus.
Image credit: Chris McAndrew [CC BY 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons