The Australian Christian Lobby has called on all State governments to take immediate steps to allow schoolgirls to feel safe in school toilets and change rooms.
It follows news last week that US President Donald Trump had overturned an Obama ‘Safe Schools’- type directive that required public schools to allow boys who identify as girls to use the girls’ bathrooms and locker rooms – or lose Government funding.
President Trump’s directive gives authority back to the schools and parents who can determine policies to help children dealing with gender dysphoria.
ACL managing director, Lyle Shelton, said that while US schools now had freedom to break from Safe Schools-type programs, the reverse was happening in Australia without parents’ consent.
“Government-funded programs such as ‘Safe Schools’ continue to teach children their gender is fluid and that it is okay for boys identifying as girls to use girls’ toilets,” Mr Shelton said.
“No child should be bullied at school for any reason but ‘Safe Schools’ has gone beyond the remit of an anti-bullying program.”
The WA Labor Party has promised it will take $1.4 million from the education department’s budget and reallocate it to the gender-fluid “Safe Schools” program if elected.
Victoria has mandated that “Safe Schools” be used in all state high schools by 2018.
“Not many parents would be aware that the ‘Safe Schools’ program promotes the right of any male identifying as ‘female’ to enter girls’ private spaces such as toilets and bathrooms,” Mr Shelton said.
“Most parents would not want an 18 year-old year 12 male identifying as a girl to be sharing private facilities with their 12 year-old year seven daughter.
“As in the USA, parents in Australia need to know their kids are safe at school and encouraging boys who identify as girls to use the girls’ bathrooms is not the way to do this.
“The rights of girls to feel safe are being trampled through ideologically-driven programs engineered by activists in pursuit of removing gender from marriage.
“Federal funding for ‘Safe Schools’ is set to cease this year but it appears many State education departments have embedded gender theory in school curricula. This is a perfect opportunity for State governments to remove all controversial gender theory from the classroom.”
Former Prime Minister John Howard has expressed concern, telling The Australian’s Paul Kelly that the program should be scrapped.
“What’s disappointed me is an issue like Safe Schools. When that emerged it should have been hit on the head by centre-right governments at federal and state level,” Mr Howard said last week.
In NSW, a Legal Issues Bulletin from the Department of Education affirms that “students should not be required to use the toilets and change rooms used by persons of the sex they were assigned at birth if they identify as a different gender.”
“The ACL calls on State governments to immediately scrap all gender ideology from schools,” Mr Shelton said.