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To ask Y1 teacher to address the class about homophobia?

(95 Posts)
lechatnoir Fri 13-Jul-12 17:51:24

A few weeks ago DS(6) & I were having a chat about weddings & engagements & I explained how  DH 'asked' my dad for my hand in marriage. DS then queried what would happen if 2 men or 2 women got married (ie would no dad's or 2 dad's be asked) & I said I didn't know but in any case plenty if people don't do it nowadays & it's just a silly old tradition going back to times when people thought girls belonged to their father/spouse. Then he said that a boy in his class (let's call him X) said boys can't marry boys & girls can't marry girls so I explained that actually legally they could & as long as you love someone it doesn't matter what sex they are. All taken on board without any drama & I thought end of conversation.

Today I collect DS and he's obviously bothered about something & it finally transpires there was an altercation in the playground today between DS & X because of this same issue and X has been telling DS he's stupid & that all gay people will all burn in hell!! WTAF!

So, AIBU to ask the teacher to address this to the class in an age-appropriate manner or should I speak to X's parents (who I assume planted this idea in X's head and therefore share the same view?). 

WorraLiberty Fri 13-Jul-12 17:54:22

Why would you want to speak to the child's parents?

If it's affecting your child/the class then I suppose you could have a word with the teacher.

But some people - particularly religious people believe homosexuals will burn in hell.

WorraLiberty Fri 13-Jul-12 17:55:24

Pressed post too soon....

Therefore, just as you've explained that two people of the same sex can have a civil ceremony, you could also explain what homophobia is.

KatherineKavanagh Fri 13-Jul-12 17:56:19

It's up to the parents to explain. Why do school have to be responsible for this?

hairylemon Fri 13-Jul-12 17:58:17

Can't you do it? And its not necessarily come from the parents. Jesus posts like this don't half shit me up for the future

PandaWatch Fri 13-Jul-12 18:01:11

Worra I assume you mean some religious people?

birdsofshoreandsea Fri 13-Jul-12 18:02:42

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Birdsgottafly Fri 13-Jul-12 18:02:54

You have no right to speak to and challenge the parents on their views based on second hand information. It will escalate if you do.

If your son is being upset by this boy then tell that to the teacher, it needs handling.

The other boy can hold his opinion, but not air them in school, it is up to the teacher to make that clear.

This is a good opportunity to start to teach your son about all intolerance and why some people hold discriminatory views.

WorraLiberty Fri 13-Jul-12 18:03:58

Yes Panda that's why I said 'some' people, particularly religious people.

Birdsgottafly Fri 13-Jul-12 18:05:32

It's up to the parents to explain. Why do school have to be responsible for this

Schools teach about diversity and tollerance, their mission statements will include this, as well as being part of the curriculum, it's just happend early.

Birdsgottafly Fri 13-Jul-12 18:06:52

Hate speech is illegal and not allowed on any statutory premises.

cantspel Fri 13-Jul-12 18:06:56

2 gay people can not get married though so the child is correct. They can have a civil partnership but thus far they cannot marry. This may change in the furture but as yet it hasn't.
Maybe if you didn't give your child incorrect information then then wouldn't end up having a altercation in the playground .

Birdsgottafly Fri 13-Jul-12 18:08:28

Er we go...

KatherineKavanagh Fri 13-Jul-12 18:11:24

Yeah birds I know that schools teach that..... 4 dc through schooling system also tells me that it's rare a teacher will address the whole class over this

Badgerina Fri 13-Jul-12 18:11:45

I think it is definitely worth mentioning to the teacher that this has happened. Schools are obliged to report incidences of racism and homophobia to the LA. It would also be appropriate for the teacher to reinforce expected behaviour (i.e.: NOT being homophobic) which can be done in an age-appropriate and gentle manner.

DS came home last year, telling me that a boy in his class had laughed at him and a friend and called them "gay" for holding hands. The boy had also said "You two are dirty" for the same reason. DS was 6 at the time.

The reason why the school ought to be responsible for this is because the school has a duty to protect the rights of all it's pupils from racism, homophobia and sexism.

What the children get up to in their parents' houses is their parents' business. What happens in school is most certainly the school's business.

Yes, some religious people may well believe that homosexuals will "burn in hell", but it doesn't make it any less homophobic and it needs to be addressed. Your instincts are spot on OP.

Please DON'T take this up with the parents yourself though - it will only lead to aggro.

MMMarmite Fri 13-Jul-12 18:13:22

Agree with Badgerina, good post.

Birdsgottafly Fri 13-Jul-12 18:22:47

"tells me that it's rare a teacher will address the whole class over this"

It's is only parents that can change that, then.

Perhaps it is only needed for these two children and not the whole class, yet.

SCOTCHandWRY Fri 13-Jul-12 18:24:26

Reposting my response from the other thread (why are there two?!), in response to comment that it's not homophobic abuse and lots of people thing being gay is wrong/evil-

Actually I'd say that telling people they will burn it hell for being gay IS homophobic abuse.

A word to teacher about the schools diversity/equality policy maybe?

FrothyOM Fri 13-Jul-12 18:27:44

I posted on the other thread too. I think it's better to talk to the teacher. You won't be able to reason with people who think gays will rot in hell.

balia Fri 13-Jul-12 18:29:49

I think homophobia absolutely should be challenged in schools, every time. Although I teach in secondary, so obvs slightly different approach, good education about homophobia can drastically reduce homophobic bullying and have a dramatic impact on young people's mind sets. Our school uses this group stonewall they are fantastic. And you may want to check out the info about homophobia in primary schools, I thought it was illuminating.

cocolepew Fri 13-Jul-12 18:30:22

Don't speak to the parents. Are you mad?

balia Fri 13-Jul-12 18:38:22

4 dc through schooling system also tells me that it's rare a teacher will address the whole class over this

Just want to point out that section 28 was only repealed in 2003.

And in Academies, BTW, they HAVE to teach the 'benefits of marriage'.

klaritaf Fri 13-Jul-12 18:41:19

the thing is if you speak to all parents who hold different opinions to yourself you would never stop, (even if you do hold the 'correct' opinion ......)
All you can do is influence your own kid. Leave the teachers out of it. Goodness me I know a child of immigrants who has 'racist' on his school record, because he once said 'knickers' and was misheard.

MMMarmite Fri 13-Jul-12 19:06:50

klaritaf So because one kid you know was unjustly punished for racism, no school should attempt to tackle homophobia? hmm

EmpressOfTheSevenOceans Fri 13-Jul-12 19:12:10

You need to tell the teacher because otherwise, the child will probably keep saying it and other children might believe him.
And, God forbid, he or they might say it to my Yr6 DD or a child like her.

DW and I can handle the bigotry disapproval. DD does NOT deserve to be told that her parents are heading for eternal torment.

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