Miranda Devine: Invasion of the Safe Space gender warriors
Daily Telegraph, 9 November 2016
SAFE schools operatives have admitted they are working in primary schools and even preschools, in direct contravention of federal government funding requirements.
And in the last desperate months before federal funding runs out next June, Safe Schools project officers are indoctrinating final year student teachers at Sydney University in their radical sexual and gender fluidity studies.
A lecture and Q & A session was held at the university last month with 170 people, mainly pre-service teachers, to “raise awareness” of a training unit Safe Schools Coalition Australia NSW has helped design for the Bachelor of Education.
“We got a lot of requests from primary schools to get some training in particular around supporting gender diverse and transgender young people, which are increasing, so we’ve been working in primary schools and occasionally we’re working with the preschools as well,” project officer Mary Flaskas told the group on October 10.
Fellow project office Darby Cass also told the meeting that Safe Schools works in primary schools to recommend the use of gender neutral language in classrooms rather than “binary” terms such as male and female.
“We’re getting a lot of work with primary schools and high schools, so they’ll go into a panic because they’re so binary.
“So in that case we would be recommending that you don’t use he and she pronouns which will make the child upset all the time, go for neutrality, let them drive it, call them by their name.”
The controversial Safe Schools program, introduced into 500 NSW schools under the guise of “anti-bullying”, was exposed earlier this year as a Marxist-inspired sex education program, involving everything from sexually-charged role play for 12-year-olds to advice on penis-tucking and breast-binding. Conceived by the Gillard government, funded by the Abbott government, it was modified by the Turnbull government this year to remove extreme content, require parental consent and only be taught in high school.
Funding runs out next year, which Flaskas bemoaned. “The funding runs out in June next year so we’re going to cram as much in as we can during that time.”
She said that the NSW Education department had removed the names of participating schools from the Safe Schools website after an outcry.
“Unfortunately, because of all the horrible stuff that happened, the NSW Department of Education decided to get all the names taken off the website so they’re no longer publicly available.”
A member of the audience asked the pair what to do: “If a student asks you to call them, like if a young boy asks you to call them a girl, but the parents have called up and expressed very strong opinions that shouldn’t happen.”
Cass said: “It depends on the age, okay?”
Flaskas interjected, saying: “I think it depends, there was a thing about whether you consider them to be mature enough, that they can make that decision on their own … If there is someone who’s uncomfortable with it or doesn’t want to do it, it can be quite difficult. But I guess you work with the school.”
Cass described a case he was involved in where, “we’ve had some horrific resistance from teachers and the child has been over 16 and at risk if their parents know, and we are like ‘you are not to call the parents, you are to support that child in the best way’.”
Cass said the teacher objected to not informing the parents, saying “But if it was my child I’d want to know!’
Cass said: “It doesn’t matter …. I think the most important thing if you are teachers and educators and you knew the child wasn’t supported [at home] would be to reach out to services that that child would go to where they could actually get some support outside of the school and have a place.”
Flaksas also spoke about changes in biology teaching: “because now it is no longer really technically correct to say that this is what a male body looks like and this is what a female body looks like.”
But the saddest moment in the lecture came when Cass described the consequences of Safe Schools meddling in children’s private lives. He described “one young gentleman” Safe Schools was working with, who was inspired to get up and announce his sexuality at school assembly, and “found himself at the brunt of many sort of things….
“So he got a bit upset with Safe Schools. So … we got a meeting that the welfare team asked us to come in and he wrote this really big letter, he really had regretted what he did and he actually just resented the marketing of Safe Schools I think … I don’t know what it was … It was actually very sad because he was a very confident sort of person and it crushed him.
“ He felt also pressure and excited so everyone’s ‘oh that’s fantastic, share, share! … That may be not the best outcome for that person … “So we don’t actually walk in and go ‘hey everybody, come out, do what you like’ it’s not that, it about.”
Here we see that, far from preventing bullying, as suspected, Safe Schools has created a victim.
Even when the evidence is staring them in the face, does it not occur to activists what parents instinctively know? That children’s emerging sexuality is private and precious and ought not be hijacked for social engineering purposes.