A “proud former Stonewall campaigner” has been handed a leading role at schools’ regulator Ofsted.
Luke Tryl, former head of education at the homosexual lobby group, has been made Director of Corporate Strategy by Chief Inspector Amanda Spielman.
Tryl served as a special advisor to previous Education Secretary Nicky Morgan, who championed the Government’s controversial ‘British values’ regulations and is a proponent of statutory sex education.
After Tryl was appointed to Morgan’s team in 2014, Stonewall said it was “delighted” he would be “working to advance equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans people at the heart of government”.
The Christian Institute has heavily criticised the Government’s British values agenda, as it led to a spate of intrusive Ofsted inspections in Christian and other faith schools.
Children aged 6-18 at Grindon Hall Christian School and Durham Free School faced intrusive questioning by Ofsted inspectors about transsexualism, homosexuality and same-sex marriage.
Ofsted claimed that inspectors found evidence of homophobic behaviour in both schools – a claim rejected by staff, pupils and parents. Despite the outcry, The Durham Free School was closed down in April 2015 and Grindon Hall – one of the best performing schools in the North East – was rated inadequate.
‘Mainstream religious views’
Later that year The Christian Institute’s Director, Colin Hart, wrote to Nicky Morgan to express his concern. He said:
“Whilst guidance from your department says there is no obligation on schools to promote gay marriage, there have been Ofsted inspections in several parts of the country where Ofsted inspectors have implied via questioning of pupils that they ought to accept gay marriage.
“We are aware of several cases of this approach being taken with primary age pupils, some as young as six.”
Ofsted, he added, “must learn to respect mainstream religious views on social issues”.
Stonewall lists statutory sex-ed in primary and secondary schools in England as its number-one manifesto aim. It wants to see LGBT specific issues included for all pupils and calls on the Government to demonstrate its commitment to tackling homophobic, biphobic, and transphobic bullying.
Last week, the Government defeated a Labour amendment to the Children and Social Work Bill which would have forced local authorities to ensure all children educated in their area received homosexual sex education.
The amendment was defeated at Committee Stage, but it also emerged that there will be an announcement of some sort at Report Stage about the Government’s policy.
Currently, primary schools are not required to teach sex education, but local authority maintained secondary schools must do so. The Department for Education has said that it expects the same from secondary academies, including free schools.