The Church of England has released a guide calling on children to explore their “gender identity” under the pretext of combating transphobic bullying—a key issue among progressives whose concerns do not include the oppression of Christians in the Middle East, China, and North Korea.
The virtue signaling move is part of the Church of England’s greater effort to engage with millennials in Britain, signed by the Archbishop of Canterbury.
“Pupils need to be able to play with the many cloaks of identity … without judgement or derision,” the Church’s 2017 guidelines for the church’s 4,7000 schools, titled “Valuing All God’s Children,” suggest. The guidance, which was released to coincide with anti-bullying week, followed advice three years ago that covered homophobic bullying with expansions to include transphobia.
The religious organization says the guidelines represent its commitment to ending LGBT prejudice in British schools, vowing to “eradicate any homophobic, biphobic and transphobic stereotyping and bullying.” Additionally, the Church states that the guidelines are intended to protect children in “modern Britain.”
“The aim of this guidance is to prevent pupils in Church of England schools and academies 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,” read the guidelines.
The guidelines state that children whose behavior does not conform to the gender binary should be accepted without question, and that open-mindedness should inform teachers about the language they use in the classroom when instructing, praising, or criticizing students.
In other words, teachers are expected to be mindful of preferred pronouns.
All Church of England school staff will be trained in accordance with the guidelines to recognize and understand instances of transphobia, and schools will be inspected and rated for their adherence to the policy.
According to the BBC, the Stonewall LGBT advocacy group played a significant role in the production of the guidelines. The Church of England believed that further action was necessary after reading the group’s 2017 School Report, which surveyed LGBT students aged 11 to 19 found that nearly half of LGBT students are bullied for their sexual orientation.
“Our research shows that nearly half of lesbian, gay, bi and trans pupils are bullied for being LGBT at school: a situation that desperately needs to change,” a spokesman said.
While the guidelines met resistance from conservatives who highlighted its calls to allow children to explore sexuality outside of the gender binary, human rights campaigner Peter Tatchell called it “big progress for a church that traditionally and historically has been hostile to LGBT rights.”