Teaching resources on gender identity are revealed in damning report

Diagrams of a ‘genderbread person’ and term ‘biologically male/female’ is banned: School teaching resources on gender identity are revealed in damning report as Rishi Sunak says he’s ‘very concerned’ by findings

  • It’s claimed parents may only find out their kid has transitioned after it happens
  • Rishi Sunak said guidance for schools will be published for the summer term’

Teaching resources including diagrams of a ‘Genderbread person’ and guidance on terms to avoid including ‘biologically male/female’ have been included in a report which claims children are being ‘put at risk’ by gender ideology. 

The report, published by the conservative think-tank Policy Exchange, suggested child welfare is in danger from ‘gender identity’ theory in schools.

It said teachers are letting pupils change their names or uniforms without parents or professionals being alerted and abandoning single-sex toilets and changing rooms.

‘Self-ID’ policies may mean parents discover their child has transitioned only when they receive a letter citing their new name and pronouns, it is claimed.

Today Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said he was ‘very concerned’ about the report’s claim that parents are not being informed as soon as child questions their gender identity. 

The hugely-controversial ‘genderbread person’ is used to illustrate the difference between gender identity, expression, sex and sexual orientation

Another teaching resourced highlighted in the report outlines to pupils terms they should avoid, one of which is discussion relating to biological sex

He said: ‘I’m very concerned about these reports. For me the safety and wellbeing of our children is of paramount importance.’

Mr Sunak also committed to publishing guidance for schools so that they know how to respond when children are asking about gender in time ‘for the summer term’.

He continued: ‘These are really sensitive areas, it’s important that we treat them sensitively, and that parents know what’s going on, and we’ll make sure that that happens.’

Most of the secondary schools surveyed by the Policy Exchange are also teaching the contested theory that individuals have a gender identity that can differ from their biological sex, the report claimed.

The ‘Genderbread person’ diagram is just one example of a number of resources that are teaching pupils that there are more than just male and female gender identities, it said.

Rishi Sunak addressed the report’s findings during a visit to the UK Atomic Energy Authority in Oxfordshire

This teaching resource was also highlighted by the Policy Exchange in its gender report

‘The Genderbread Person reduces a child’s identity to a number of highly contested beliefs, which again are not based in evidence,’ the report said.

The hugely-controversial ‘genderbread person’ is used to illustrate the difference between gender identity, expression, sex and sexual orientation.

But critics say it’s ‘unscientific nonsense’. The figure presents the idea that biological sex is a spectrum and that everyone has a gender identity.

It has also been criticised for saying sexual orientation is based on gender rather than sex. 

Meanwhile, another teaching resourced highlighted in the report outlines to pupils terms they should avoid, one of which is discussion relating to biological sex.

DAILY MAIL COMMENT: Lack of trans guidance is failing our schools 


The report said: ‘It also implies that sex is not binary. Similarly, the Genderbread image above implies that biological sex exists on some kind of sliding scale.

‘This is of course, incorrect. Sex is immutable and defined by chromosomal DNA.’

The findings have prompted the government to issue guidance for schools and to finish a review ordered by Mr Sunak into what is being taught in sex education lessons. 

Policy Exchange sent Freedom of Information (FOI) requests to more than 300 secondary schools in England to make up its research.

According to the report, around 28 per cent of secondary schools are not maintaining single-sex toilets and 19 per cent are not maintaining single-sex changing rooms. 

In a foreword to the report, Labour MP Rosie Duffield writes: ‘A generation of children are being let down, because well-established safeguarding standards are being compromised.

‘There has been a determined attempt to dismiss these concerns, by suggesting that such practice is only happening in a few secondary schools. Policy Exchange exposes the reality that this ideology is widespread across secondary schools.

‘This Government has failed children by allowing partisan beliefs to become entrenched within the education system. Meanwhile, the Opposition has failed to pull them up on it.’

The report lists the requirements imposed upon schools such as having a ‘designated safeguarding lead’, working with councils and health services and not promising confidentiality to children.

It cites rules stating children are best looked after ‘with their parents playing a full part in their lives’ and quotes official guidance saying parental responsibility includes ‘naming the child and agreeing to any change of name’ and ‘agreeing to the child’s medical treatment’.

Policy Exchange claims that ‘safeguarding principles are being routinely disregarded in many secondary schools, which are neglecting their safeguarding responsibilities and principles in favour of a set of contested beliefs, in ways that risk jeopardising child wellbeing and safety’.

Using the FOI Act, its researchers asked 304 secondary schools in England what their policies were on children who identify as the opposite sex and on changes of names, pronouns, hair and uniforms.

Of the 154 to reply, only 39 said they would inform parents as soon as a pupil expressed the wish to change gender while 87 said they would not.

One school claimed the Equality Act meant staff will not inform a parent or carer about ‘trans or trans questioning without the student’s consent’.

In a foreword to the report, Labour MP Rosie Duffield (pictured) says ‘a generation of children are being let down’

Another said it ‘would be illegal’ under the Data Protection Act to share ‘names, pronouns and transgender status with parents’. 

Only 75 of the schools said their designated safeguarding lead or a medical professional would be informed about a pupil wanting to change gender.

Asked if they had a self-identification system for gender identity, 54 said they did. Questioned on their teaching, 104 schools said they taught the idea that people have a gender identity that may be different from their biological sex.

About one in five of the schools did not have different changing rooms for boys and girls and 60 per cent said they did not have single-sex sports classes.

Conservative MP Mark Jenkinson said: ‘This report lays bare the stark reality that some schools are routinely placing contested gender identity beliefs ahead of child wellbeing.’

Geoff Barton, general secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders, said: ‘The Government has still not produced guidance for schools on supporting pupils who identify as trans or who are questioning their gender identity, despite this having been under discussion for several years.’

A DfE spokesman said: ‘The Education Secretary is working closely with the minister for women and equalities to produce guidance for schools which we will be consulting on shortly.

‘We have brought forward the review of the relationships, sex and health education statutory guidance, which will give us the opportunity to consider the evidence and provide clarity on what is appropriate to be taught in schools.’

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