The Scottish Government has admitted that its proposed sex education guidance needs “more clarity”, after reviewing more than 4,000 consultation responses.
During Holyrood’s Portfolio Question Time, the Cabinet Secretary for Education and Skills Jenny Gilruth said it will update its Relationships, Sexual Health and Parenthood (RSHP) guidance “in the light of that feedback and other findings of the consultation” and “shortly” publish a report in response.
Currently, although the proposed guidance states that RSHP “should be presented in an objective, balanced and sensitive manner”, it directs teachers to resources from LGBT Youth Scotland and Stonewall Scotland.
The Cabinet Secretary made the statement in response to Pam Gosal’s question as to whether Scotland would follow the UK Government’s helpful guidance on how schools should deal with gender-questioning children.
The MSP for West Scotland said: “The guidance acknowledges the critical role that biological sex plays in maintaining safety and promoting equality in schools, and it recognises the profound psychological effects that social transitioning has on young people and the need for parental involvement in such life-changing decisions.”
The guidance, which is undergoing a public consultation, has been largely welcomed as a key step towards ending the trans-affirming agenda pushed on schools in recent years by lobby groups such as Stonewall.
When the UK Government published the guidance in December, Equalities Minister Kemi Badenoch emphasised the importance of championing objective biological reality over subjective inner feelings about gender.
“The principle of biological sex is real…Sex is not ‘assigned’ at birth…No child is born in the wrong body. Some children may not like their body, and we should help them. But social transitioning is not a neutral act and should only happen in rare circumstances.”
She said parents “should be included in all decisions relating to a child’s request to socially transition”, explaining: “No one loves children more than their parents and it is wrong to exclude parents from what can be a pathway to irreversible medical decisions.”