Critics of the parents protesting outside Anderton Park Primary School against LGBT+ beliefs and concepts have been labelled as “‘snowflakes’”, a court in Birmingham has heard.
For nearly two months, protests and demonstrations have been held outside of the school in Birmingham against the mandatory teaching of LGBT+ classes that will be taught to young children. The parents of these young children have joined the protests and have publicly objected to such messages being taught to their children.
Amir Ahmed joined Dr Salman Butt for Islam21c’s Unscripted Podcast recently to tell the parents’ own story and perspective.
Birmingham City Council, however, is seeking a court injunction to ban the protests from taking place right outside of the school. Today’s court hearing is the first opportunity for protestors to present their case in court.
John Randall, the legal representative of the protestors said:
“I would say the picture painted by the council was misleading and exaggerated and suggests the demonstrations and protests have crossed the line into unlawful or non-peaceful, when in fact it would require something of a snowflake sensitivity to regard them as terrifying or threatening demonstrations.” 
He further added:
“Any child has a right to education but that… must not become state indoctrination, as set out in the European Convention (on human rights).” 
Randall stated that the evidence presented by the Council to the High Court had been flawed and cherry-picked to portray the protestors in a negative light and did not corroborate to video evidence provided to the court by the defendants.
Furthermore, Randall said that there had been nothing wrong with the chants of the parents and protestors and that the rhetoric used was not violent, rather it simply highlighted the parents’ objections to their children being forced to learn about homosexuality and going against their values and principles.
Some of the slogans and chants used by the demonstrations included: “Let Kids Be Kids”; “Head Teacher Step Down”; and “Our Children Our Choice”.
Protest coordinators Shakeel Afsar, Rosina Afsal, and Amir Ahmed were present at the High Court. Anderton Primary School headteacher Sarah Hewitt-Clarkson was also present at the hearing.
Anderton Park Parents’ Position Statement
Anderton Park parents and community, why are we demonstrating?
Contrary to the Schools narrative that parents have NO say over RSE/SRE curriculum at school the law is THAT THEY DO!
- Parents have the right to educate their children in accordance with their religious beliefs. Article 9 of the Human Rights Act 1998 – freedom of thought, belief, and religion.
Article 2 of the first protocol re-emphasises this, “in relation to education and to teaching, the State shall respect the right of parents to ensure such education and teaching is in conformity with their own religious and philosophical convictions.” As an arm of the state, the school should ensure this is so, or IT is breaking the law.
- In response to the consultation regarding RSE teaching published in February 2019, the government stated that it should be taught, bearing in mind the religious backgrounds of pupils.
- The Children and social care act (2017) states, in respect of mandatory relationships education for primary school pupils, at section S34, which gives the enabling power to the secretary of state to lay down the regulations and the guidance, that religious background and age appropriateness must be taken in to account. It also states that BEFORE any of this education can be delivered there has to be a consultation. At Anderton Park, there was NO consultation. Parents had to find out when children came home telling them that the school told them that girls could/should be boys and vice versa, amongst other stories.
Parents are calling for three things:
- For the current RSE/SRE programme at the school to be suspended;
- A proper consultation involving third parties where the parents, NOT the school, decide who represents parents;
- For any future programmes to be BOTH age-appropriate and religiously sensitive.
Some of the specific objections to teaching at the school past and present:
- The school has been asking children to consider if they are transgender and encouraging cross-dressing. Evidenced by the teaching of the books “the princess boy,” “Julian is a mermaid,” “the boy in the dress” and numerous statements by children to their parents.
- There has been encouragement for children to think about whether they would want to be in a same-sex relationship and go against their parents’ culture. Evidenced by the teaching (previously) of the book King and King, also the lesson plan for the book “picnic in the park” which asks some children to role-play being a gay couple and again evidenced by children’s accounts of other teaching and practices
LGBT Lobby vs Muslim Parents? | SKY NEWS
Islam21c’s Chief Editor Dr. Salman Butt is interviewed by Sky News’ Kay Burley on the Birmingham School protests.