Last week my friend’s 7 year old son Ian (not his real name) came home from school with some news.
A year previously he had told a teacher that he felt he was just stupid. He never understood what he was being taught, couldn’t read more than a few words and his writing was worse than his 3 year old sisters. Ian was convinced that he would never learn anything so wanted to stop even trying.
The teacher asked a few questions then told him “Being stupid is okay. There are many people who are stupid but they get on fine and live happy, stupid lives.”
He agreed that the boy would not have to learn anything else and that his class would be told Ian was stupid but they were not to pick on him, and they were not to tell anyone else, especially their parents.
Ian was also told that his stupidity would be kept secret from his parents until he was ready for them to be told. The teacher did not even check to see if Ian had any health or family troubles.
A couple of weeks ago Ian met someone who had felt like him. This friend spent 2 years being taught nothing at school but eventually he got worried perhaps he wasn’t stupid after all. He persuaded his parents to seek advice and found out that he was absolutely NOT stupid – he was dyslexic. Now he knew what his real problem was and was getting help – he’d never been happier!
Ian told his parents that the school weren’t keen but he wanted to find out if he really was stupid.
I’m sure you don’t believe this could happen in our schools but change ‘stupid’ for ‘trans’ and change ‘not understanding’ for ‘feeling different to others’ and you have the process that the Scottish government have told our schoolteachers to follow for all pupils at primary or secondary levels.
Their guidance goes well beyond supporting children with uncertainty over their gender or sexuality – it mandates encouragement and reinforcement of any hint, thought or feeling that they may be trans.
This must be stopped. Children must be given time, space and security to discover their own feelings and to develop whatever is right for them as they grow into adulthood – they must not be forced into the trans mould to suit a small number of trans extremists.
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