Lib-Safe School's Talk Grooming
As a Teacher, I cannot support the Safe Schools & Respectful Relationships programs. I believe they actually disrespect and endanger students and debase the whole teaching profession.
Like all kids, LGBTI kids should be shielded from bullying. Nobody wants any student to be unsafe at school and nobody supports ‘disrespectful’ relationships. But I do have four objections to this curriculum, which I’ll go through briefly and then you can ask questions.
Firstly, ‘Bullying’, as distinct from your run of the mill random feral outbursts from children, is persistent, targeted malicious behaviour designed to cause emotional and or physical pain. But this curriculum implies that disagreement is a form of bullying.
I believe that this will destroy the culture of debate and learning at any school and replace it with a culture of silence and fear, which sadly, might backfire on exactly the student’s that it aims to protect. State schools are supposed to cater for all cultures, which in practice, means enforcing basic shared rules of civil conduct and leaving the spheres of morality, spirituality and broader ethics up to the individual.
But in this curriculum, people who disagree with it, people who believe in a different set of sexual ethics or biological genders, are at best, treated as though they don’t exist and at worst, portrayed as bigots. No teacher, no student, no parent and from next year, no public school is allowed to opt out of the Safe Schools and Respectful Relationships curriculum.
It is obvious to everyone except the Safe Schools coalition and the Labour Party that people are different with varying viewpoints. And personally, being aware of the vast diversity of views amongst my students, I’ve always taught them that a reasonable response to deep differences is something along the lines of, look I think it’s immoral- and I can’t be a part of it, but I don’t hate you or I wish you well and I won’t stand by doing nothing if others mistreat you. Or I care about you, I just don’t agree with you.
But that’s not good enough for Daniel Andrews. In this curriculum, there is only one truly respectful way for anybody to relate to the LGBTI community and that is to publicly celebrate their lifestyle and even experiment with it themselves.
Which brings me to my second objection- These programs systematically sexualise students and worst of all, give legal protection to any predators lurking in the teacher ranks.
Did you know that Gary Dowsett, who works with Roz Ward (the architect of Safe Schools) openly advocates for the legalisation of paedophilia? Daniel Andrew’s hired Gary Dowsett’s Department at Latrobe University to write sexual education material for our kids.
Well, please forgive me if I have deep misgivings about the fruit of that unholy union! Allow me to take you through the Grooming Fact Sheet from CASAC Inc. which is New South Wales’ peak body for community-based services providing child sexual assault counselling and support services. Watch how they align perfectly with the Safe Schools & Respectful Relationships material.
"STEP ONE & TWO: Sexualize the relationship through conversation, expose the child to sexual material and images THEN Shape the child’s sexual preferences by manipulating what the child finds exciting."
I could spend a week taking you all through the classroom activities which fit this description. I’ll read out a few examples while showing you some screen shots from the websites that students are funnelled to- mostly they get there in two clicks.
A paper survey to be completed and handed in which records students sexual experiences with and willingness to try various sexual acts such as threesomes, using dildo’s etc and tellingly, students are not given the option of answering no not ever.
Graphic descriptions for 15 year olds of analingus and cunnilingus.
There are dozens upon dozens of conversation starters, little scenarios to discuss, that depict young people as hyper sexualised, careless and emotionless.
Like the 16 year old who began having sex at 13 with no mention of statutory rape, but a comment “It’s nobody’s business if I like sex”.
A 17 yr old girl who has had 15 sexual partners of various genders.
Portrayals of casual sex with strangers and cheating on partners is standard.
Contraction of STIs is standard.
Various role-playing activities where yr. 7 & 8 students are asked to publicly role play sexually active 16 & 17 yr. old gay, bisexual or very promiscuous characters -even come with a warning- something that I have never ever encountered in any school resource before since- the warning says “After the activity, to de-role, ask the students their real names, how they are feeling right now and where they are… This is important to ensure none of the role-players has slipped into a state of distress or disassociation… if anyone is a bit off or clearly distressed, ask them to step outside and ask what they need to help them feel more in control. It could be some fresh air or a drink.”
Now just what possible educational justification is there for all this erotic material? It has NOTHING to do with bullying. All it does is confuse children into to thinking that it is a perfectly normal thing for adults to want to know all about and graphically discuss their private, intimate sexual development.
And of course- THAT IS ACTUALLY NOT TRUE. Most teachers know the value of boundaries.
My Dad was a teacher, and kids loved him. He said to me when I was young, that even when he saw that a kid needed a hug, he’d have to say to them that he couldn’t give them a hug because if he broke that rule, crossed that boundary, giving them a safe hug would actually leave them defenceless to know when they were being exploited by a bad hug, by a bad adult, or a bad teacher. And I know from personal experience that he was right.
I am so angry with Daniel Andrews. He has made our children unsafe, he has given perverts a mask to hide behind so they can eroticise the classroom without fear of reprimand. I and many other teachers would rather lose our jobs than be party to this filthy rubbish- and who will that leave?
STEP THREE: Taking undue interest in the child's sexual development.
Prior to these programs if young students displayed sexualised behaviour, language or knowledge, I would rightly be obliged under mandatory reporting to report that but now I am to encourage and participate in those discussions.
Here are some direct quotes about sexuality from Mr. Andrew’s programs:
“Sexuality is how people feel and express themselves as sexual beings…. Sexuality is an integral part of life.. it… starts at birth and ends only when we die…”
“Sexual play is a normal part of child development in every society… In the Primary Years it may include simulated intercourse with clothes on”
“If a primary school aged child asks “What is a clitoris?”, Answer with: “A little round bump about as big as a pea which is just above the opening to where the wee comes out. It feels good when you touch it.”
“If a primary school aged child asks “What is masturbation?” Answer with: “It is when you stroke your penis or clitoris and it feels good”.
If a PRESCHOOLER asks “What is the vagina?” Answer with “ A special passage where the baby comes out, in between where wee and poo come out: It is also where the man’s penis goes during sexual intercourse- it will probably be helpful to draw a picture.”
Of course there is a place for some basic sex education in schools, but I doubt it legitimately begins in Kinder or covers the use of sex toys.
STEP FOUR: Assuring the child of the “rightness” of what they are doing.
By plastering this program with the language of human rights and abusing the trust imbued in the profession of Teaching, Daniel Andrew’s and Roz Ward and Gary Dowsett are attempting to disguise the inappropriateness of this material. Well they failed.
STEP FIVE: Telling the child the acts will not hurt them.
This is yet another aspect of the program which breaks my heart. The emotional consequences and physical risks involved in the casual, experimental, pornified sex that Safe Schools promotes are either completely withheld or downplayed. But who will have to wear those consequences when they finally hit? Our children, of course.
And I quote: “STI’s are a normal part of sex”.
Porn is offered with no mention of it’ highly addictive nature, questionable morality or widely acknowledged detrimental effects on relationships.
STIs are completely whitewashed, even AIDs is presented as ordinary and manageable, instead of something avoid at high cost!
Pregnancy is barely mentioned, and abortion is assumed.
Anal sex, in particular is promoted over and over- with no mention of risks- like permanent damage to the sphincter, which even many gay men decide to avoid by engaging in other types of sex instead.
But our young girls and boys are sold an exciting, erotic adventure to go on, with the only safety advice being to get “regular” testing to monitor and manage- not avoid- STI’s.
Sexual ethics, such as taking care of people beyond basic consent, beyond a basic duty to inform partners about ones STI history are basically absent. All sex is right so long as those two basic standards are met. In fact, the material repeatedly undermines the concepts of age of consent and statutory rape, presenting them over and over again in past tense and as if there was no harm done.
Surely this curriculum neglects the basic duty of care? And yet, I would be labelled homophobic, transphobic and bigoted simply for wanting to warn children away from danger. Who benefits from encouraging children to engage in high risk, casual experimental sex? Is it the kids? I think we all know who.
STEP SIX: Encompasses my third objection, and that is that these programs alienate the child from their parents and family. Insidious is the word that comes to my mind when I think about the way Daniel Andrew’s program drives a wedge between parents and children.
For example, students are LITERALLY advised to request that their school remove filters for pornographic sites if parents block them at home.
Daniel Andrew’s has endorsed the following testimony from one kid who began transitioning to another gender: “My teachers broke multiple rules to allow me to leave school without my parents’ permission for medical appointments.” …….. Like those teachers are hero’s. Those teachers should be sued.
As a teacher I consider myself to have a supporting role in the child’s life, I support children to work things out with their parents. And yet, here we have actual policy documents directing teachers to conspire against parents, so that students can begin irreversible hormone treatment, treat STIs or acquire abortions.
The language of these programs is also alarming, children are referred to as “sexual agents” and “mature minors”, concepts which challenge the Age of Consent Laws designed protect children from sexual exploitation. Teachers should be supporting families and their choices, not betraying and undermining them.
My final objection is that is that these programs force teacher’s to promote a sociological theory about the nature of gender which enjoys neither popular public support nor scientific consensus to back it up. How dare Daniel Andrews wage his war on culture in our schools! He is using our children as guinea pigs in his social experiment and conscripting us teachers to carry out his plans! As for parents? Well he simply doesn’t care what parent’s think!
Just for some basic background:
Gender fluidity theory or Transgender theory basically argues that gender is invented by society- that maleness and femaleness are not reliant on DNA, hormones or genitalia and should actually be decided by each individual based on they feel. Individuals can decide, essentially, whether other people should regard them as male, female or any number of other “genders”. Obviously adopting this theory as fact has numerous practical consequences, which cannot be objected to, without being tarred and feathered as a bigot. (Just to be clear, I understand that Intersex is an actual biological condition, able to be diagnosed using anatomical, DNA and other tests, and it is incredibly rare- but that is not the issue here.)
The simple fact is, that most people are unpersuaded by this theory. Not because they are bigots, but because it is essentially unpersuasive. Anyone can look up the research which shows that most cases of gender dysphoria (80 up to 98%) dissipate throughout childhood and that even most of the other cases revert to their original gender within ten years, that hormone therapy and surgery don’t cure the depression in any case and on and on the list goes.
Many parents and teachers would find the teaching material disturbing, for example gender is literally presented as a spectrum, with stereotypical female and male characteristics at either end and ‘transgender’ in the middle. Gender stereotypes are apparently invalid, but if a boy fits into female stereotypes- then that is used as justification for deciding to identify as a female. Thus, students who do not fit neatly into the stereotypes at either end of the scale will be forced to wonder if they are actually transgender or some other new gender that they didn’t even know existed. Ordinary boys and girls with a variety of personalities will now be left wondering if perhaps they are one of 13 different genders. What about my female students who are fantastic at football? Or my male students who are excellent singers? Should they now reassess their gender?
I pity the poor impressionable student who, miserably and needlessly confused, goes to the Dr for some common sense advice and ends up on a freight train to irreversible surgery. Go home and look up “sex-change regret”. Think Safe-Schools warns children about that?
Daniel Andrews wants teachers like me to abuse my position of trust to help promote, diagnose and secretly treat other people’s children for a condition so contested that no consensus exists on whether it’s even a psychological or biological condition!
I am a teacher of English, of Legal Studies, of History, of Philosophy. I am a teacher of vulnerable children, sincerely trusted by parents.
I am not a doctor, or a psychologist- I should not be expected to psychoanalyse my students, I should not be expected to suggest and secretly procure controversial, drastic medical treatments.
I am not a Madam in a brothel, I should not be expected to instruct students to use dildo’s, to try analingus and threesomes, to treat STIs as normal.
I should not be expected to invade student privacy by sexually harass them by asking them about their private, intimate, sexual development and interests!
What Daniel Andrew’s is doing, is political exploitation of teachers for his own ends.
Who is going to be legally and morally culpable, not if, but when it all goes wrong? Who will have to live with the guilt? What has this got to do with domestic violence and bullying?
If Daniel Andrew’s was serious about stopping bullying he’d back a simple program that taught kids practical strategies for managing strong emotions, developing self-control increasing social-emotional intelligence.