School going for ‘Stonewall Champion’ status

(52 Posts)
Harrystylesismyjam Tue 04-May-21 18:42:05

I’m a governor at my daughters (Year 12) school. In a recent meeting it has been said the school is aiming for ‘gold’ stonewall champion status. Now I don’t know a lot about it, I’m very much on the periphery of the GC movement but I know how I feel and the message TWAW is not one I want pushed onto my children. Acceptance, inclusivity etc sure, but not at the expense of young women and children’s rights.

What are my starting points for questioning this?

OP’s posts: |
persistentwoman Tue 04-May-21 18:47:44

Here you are OP. The excellent Safe Schools Alliance have a template letter regarding Stonewall's inappropriate relationship with schools. They've got lots of other vital resources as well.

safeschoolsallianceuk.net/resources-2/letter-templates/#Stonewall_Champion_schools_letter

Harrystylesismyjam Tue 04-May-21 18:47:47

And when I say my children, really I mean any children or young adults.

OP’s posts: |
Leafstamp Tue 04-May-21 18:51:23

Oh god, if this is true, you’ve come to the right place!

Here are a couple of starters:

safeschoolsallianceuk.net/wp-content/uploads/2020/10/Parents-Guide-to-external-PSHE-RSE-providers.pdf

www.transgendertrend.com/product/stonewall-schools-guidance-a-critical-review/

I think both of these organisations would be happy for you to contact them directly for support.

Harrystylesismyjam Tue 04-May-21 18:54:34

These are brilliant. I’m in the (zoom) meeting currently and I’m hesitant about going for it in the meeting but I have asked exactly what the status means and they have told me it is basically being recognised by them, able to use their watermark and literature. I’m going to have to take this further aren’t I and stick my neck on the line?

OP’s posts: |
Catnuzzle Tue 04-May-21 18:56:18

Yes. Good luck and thank you for taking a stand flowers

Harrystylesismyjam Tue 04-May-21 18:57:10

That letter is absolutely fantastic and I will absolutely send it. I’m going to throughly read through these resources. I knew this was the place to come!

OP’s posts: |
Leafstamp Tue 04-May-21 18:59:43

Harrystylesismyjam

These are brilliant. I’m in the (zoom) meeting currently and I’m hesitant about going for it in the meeting but I have asked exactly what the status means and they have told me it is basically being recognised by them, able to use their watermark and literature. I’m going to have to take this further aren’t I and stick my neck on the line?

Yes, please do take it further. If you need support and encouragement, we are right behind you, as are those well respected organisations.

SSA has taken up something on my/others behalf at the moment.

LadyBuffOfBuffdonia Tue 04-May-21 19:02:10

If they're going for gold, they could already hold bronze or silver.
Which might indicate how much resistance you'd be up against. I'm sure being a governor you'd likely know this information, but if not they'll display the symbol on the website.

Leafstamp Tue 04-May-21 19:05:36

Another useful article

www.transgendertrend.com/stonewall-school-champion/

Harrystylesismyjam Tue 04-May-21 19:08:40

@LadyBuffOfBuffdonia I have asked regards what going for gold means and they said they currently have champion status (which I was not aware of) and this is a step up from that. My questions will be minuted. I’ve got to be honest my heart was thumping asking the questions because I don’t really have the knowledge to back up my discomfort so was just really asking them to clarify so I can be sure about what I am arguing against.

OP’s posts: |
Janaih Tue 04-May-21 19:11:11

Thankyou for taking a stand.

newnortherner111 Tue 04-May-21 19:32:27

Good luck, hope you get somewhere.

persistentwoman Tue 04-May-21 19:35:13

OP - useful questions to ask are how much time and energy the school is investing in some of the other 'protected characteristics' ?
What pupil based data do they have to indicate that LGBT etc issues are a major issue in terms of achievement and pupil data?
If they are already a Stonewall silver status why do they need to invest more resources in this? Were the initial materials / school investment inadequate in terms of pupil outcomes? How did they assess it in terms of achievement, student welfare / wellbeing, bullying outcomes?

Ask for details about how much £££, staff time, curriculum time, training has been devoted to Stonewall on a year by year basis?
How does this compare to the school's investment in Black / ethnic minority achievement? Children with disabilities ? SEN? Autism awareness? Mental health initiatives? etc. Are these (and other areas) as fully resourced both financially and in terms of staff / student time?
If not why not? What is the school based evidence to show that LGBT issues must take priority?

It's the governing body's role to make the school justify such massive levels of time and £££ to what is essentially a sexual politics political lobby group - and one that argues to remove single sex sport, toilets, showers and changing rooms from girls.

Zinco Tue 04-May-21 19:35:15

I’m very much on the periphery of the GC movement but I know how I feel and the message TWAW is not one I want pushed onto my children. Acceptance, inclusivity etc sure, but not at the expense of young women and children’s rights.

I don't know if it's already been mentioned in the links given, but the Education Act 1996 requires that political issues be handled in schools in a balanced and impartial way.

"TWAW" has fairly clear political content in a debate over rights, so presumably you couldn't just push that line as one-sided propaganda.

Someone could request that the GC perspective is taught to children as a credible alternative, if they want to give trans-rights activist stuff. I imagine if they realized they had to teach both sides of the debate, they maybe wouldn't want to teach it at all.

Leafstamp Tue 04-May-21 19:39:45

persistentwoman

OP - useful questions to ask are how much time and energy the school is investing in some of the other 'protected characteristics' ?
What pupil based data do they have to indicate that LGBT etc issues are a major issue in terms of achievement and pupil data?
If they are already a Stonewall silver status why do they need to invest more resources in this? Were the initial materials / school investment inadequate in terms of pupil outcomes? How did they assess it in terms of achievement, student welfare / wellbeing, bullying outcomes?

Ask for details about how much £££, staff time, curriculum time, training has been devoted to Stonewall on a year by year basis?
How does this compare to the school's investment in Black / ethnic minority achievement? Children with disabilities ? SEN? Autism awareness? Mental health initiatives? etc. Are these (and other areas) as fully resourced both financially and in terms of staff / student time?
If not why not? What is the school based evidence to show that LGBT issues must take priority?

It's the governing body's role to make the school justify such massive levels of time and £££ to what is essentially a sexual politics political lobby group - and one that argues to remove single sex sport, toilets, showers and changing rooms from girls.

Brilliant points.

toffeebutterpopcorn Tue 04-May-21 19:41:53

And how much is this taking from the school coffers? What exactly do you get for this balloon juice?

LadyBuffOfBuffdonia Tue 04-May-21 19:44:05

www.google.com/amp/s/schoolsweek.co.uk/cancel-culture-gender-stereotypes-and-extreme-political-stances-what-new-dfe-guidance-says-about-rse/amp/

^Someone could request that the GC perspective is taught to children as a credible alternative, if they want to give trans-rights activist stuff. I imagine if they realized they had to teach both sides of the debate, they maybe wouldn't want to teach it at all.^

And they don't have to as the gender section isn't mandatory. However, what is clear is gender stereotypes and wrong body ideology is not allowed.

Whilst the 2020 advice is scarce it doesn't exactly endorse Stonewall's ideology.

Harrystylesismyjam Tue 04-May-21 19:48:54

This is going to take some reading...

Because my initial knee jerk response to any pushback from this will be ‘oh don’t be so fucking stupid you can’t change biology’ and for a change I’d really like to be the rational sensible one with stats and links to back up my POV.

I’ve been a fairly meek and mild governor until this point. It will raise more than one eyebrow that THIS is the hill I choose to die on 😂

OP’s posts: |
SmokedDuck Tue 04-May-21 20:06:45

I would push, what do you really get for the time and money you are spending on this (and not spending on other things...)

Melroses Tue 04-May-21 20:09:23

Yes, admin time and money is definitely a good starter.

OhHolyJesus Tue 04-May-21 20:23:04

Firstly, thank you for standing up to this, truly, I don't underestimate what this involves.

It's not the same for companies and organisations as it is for schools but I would suggest, if you have time, a browse through the FOIs on WhatDoTheyKnow that are under #DontSubmitToStonewall as hidden within are some of the expectations Stonewall has around their membership.

It's not the same as schools but if you needed materials to refer to, to illustrates your concerns, you could maybe find something there.

Everything that had already been suggested is great though and that's all before you get to toilets...

OhHolyJesus Tue 04-May-21 20:26:18

This might be useful

Leaked transcript confirms Stonewall’s plans to target primary school children http://www.mumsnet.com/Talk/womens_rights/4141017-Leaked-transcript-confirms-Stonewall-s-plans-to-target-primary-school-children

OhHolyJesus Tue 04-May-21 20:34:26

You may have this shared with you in support of the gold level application

https://governorsforschools.org.uk/news/stonewall-lgbt-pupils-mental-health-wellbeing/

But then there's the Dulwich College, Highgate School and the Everyone's Invited website and I saw this from Australia and thought about the type bullying girls receive

https://www.facebook.com/100044384471209/posts/331535425002604/?d=n^
^
I think in terms of value for money the championship awards are money for old rope, and it's used as a box ticking exercise to say they've done something when actually the same old same old goes under the radar.

OhHolyJesus Tue 04-May-21 20:42:29

Sorry for multiple posts! Last one for now, just hoping you might find this useful, if needing to make points for practical action and not box ticking.

From Women and Equalities Commission report 2016-2017.

publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201617/cmselect/cmwomeq/91/91.pdf

"1. Data published in September 2015 showed that 5,500 sexual offences were recorded
in UK schools over a three-year period, including 600 rapes.1 A 2010 YouGov poll of
16–18 year olds found 29% of girls experienced unwanted sexual touching at school and a
further 71% of 16–18-year-olds said they heard sexual name-calling such as “slut” or “slag”
towards girls at school daily or a few times per week. Nearly a quarter (24%) said that their
teachers never said unwanted sexual touching, sharing of sexual pictures or sexual name
calling are unacceptable, and 40% said they did not receive lessons or information on
sexual consent.2
2. In 2015 Girlguiding UK found that 75% of girls and young women said anxiety about
potentially experiencing sexual harassment affects their lives in some way. The same
survey found that 90% of young women aged 13–21 agreed that the Government should
make sure all schools are addressing sexual harassment and bullying in schools.3
3. Despite evidence that sexual harassment and sexual violence in schools is affecting
the lives of girls and young women, the issue has received relatively little national attention
prior to the launch of this inquiry. It has not been addressed by the UK Government to
date, although it is an issue on which the Welsh Government has taken action. Whilst
some schools and specialist organisations are doing excellent work in this area, too often
incidents of sexual harassment and sexual violence are ignored or receive an inadequate
response.!

ukfeminista.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/Report-Its-just-everywhere.pdf#:~:text=%E2%80%9CIt%E2%80%99s%20just%20everywhere%E2%80%9D%3A%20A%20study%20on%20sexism%20in,sexism%20at%20school%20as%20part%20of%20this%20study.

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