Boys in tiaras, girls in firemen’s helmets now ok in Britain’s church-run schools

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LONDON, Nov. 13 – New guidance was issued Monday to 4,700 schools run by the Church of England in Britain in a new drive to challenge homophobic, biphobic and transphobic bullying.

It means young children can express themselves, with boys allowed to wear princess tiaras or tutus or girls wearing firemen’s helmets or superhero cloaks, says what is so far the most detailed guidance to a major education provider in Britain.

Around one million children attend CofE schools across the country, with the 52-page report outlining how the guidance aims to prevent pupils from having their self-worth diminished or their ability to achieve impeded by being bullied because of their perceived or actual sexual orientation or gender identity.

The report makes 12 recommendations for schools embracing an inclusive vision for education where every child should be revered and respected as members of a community. The guidance applies to children from primary school age to high schools.

The CofE’s chief education officer Nigel Genders, said: “Providing an education to our 1 million children that will enable them to live life in all its fullness is a big responsibility.

“This practical and thoughtful advice is packed with templates and a comprehensive selection of resources for schools, teachers, families and young people.”

Genders added the new report acknowledges that it is likely that not all will agree on issues to do with human sexuality, marriage or gender identity.

Stephen Conway, Bishop of Ely and lead bishop for education said: “This guidance will help to bring our vision into reality by equipping schools to remove these pernicious forms of bullying that strike at the heart of a child’s identity and formation.”The Daily Telegraph said Monday the new guidance has been welcomed by children’s charities and organisations representing the LGBT community.

Javed Khan, CEO of children’s charity Barnardo’s, “Respecting the unique worth of every person is an integral part of Barnardo’s values, so we wholeheartedly welcome this move by the Church of England.”

(Copyright Xinhua, received through National News Agency)

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