Parents for Choice in Education: Stop teaching my kids queer & trans people exist

Content Notice: Homo-antagonism and trans-antagonism

Eva Ferguson begins this article in what (I hope) is a barely contained snicker:

A new toolkit for teachers on educating students around gender diversity is being criticized by parent groups who say it doesn’t give families a chance to opt out of conversations they say may not fit their values.

Yes, that’s right, there are “some families” complaining they can’t opt out of fact-based education. If you’re a regular on my blog, you’ll suspect Parents for Choice in Education, a lobby group that gets its jimmies rustled every time more facts worm their way into schools.

Ferguson writes of a guidance document published by the Alberta Teacher’s Association called Toolkit for Safe and Caring Discussions and Sexual and Gender Minorities. It’s exactly what it says on the tin: A series of tips on what a law like Bill 7 or Bill 10 actually means and what substantive changes you can make to your teaching when you need to be accommodating of queer & trans youth. It includes such insidious suggestions as…

addressing students as “folks, friends, students or comrades,” instead of just “boys or girls,” or teaching students to ask each other “do you have a sweetheart or a partner,” instead of saying “do you have a boyfriend or a girlfriend.”

“Comrades.” I don’t know how you can write this without laughing, because you know an unhinged conservative is frothing at the mouth because of that suggestion.

But Donna Trimble

Called it! (Trimble, by the way, is of the “NDP will foist comprehensive sex ed on schools!” infamy. As if it were supposed to raise the alarm).

“We are getting a lot of calls of concern from parents asking ‘where is the balance? Isn’t this sex education? And why can’t we opt out of this?’” she said.

Why can’t we opt out of teachers choosing to use gender neutral language? Is your bubble that fucking fragile?

“There are individuals that still feel marriage is between a man and a woman and that there is a biblical understanding of male and female from a faith perspective.”

And they’re free to feel whatever the fuck they want, as long as they aren’t using it as a bludgeon to limit the rights of others.

Holy shit. Let it never be said that safe spaces are the monopoly of “liberals.” Apparently all it takes to threaten Trimble’s delicately crafted faith is to use a gender neutral pronoun! WoooOOOOoooo *wavey fingers*




  1. chigau (ever-elliptical) says

    “do you have a sweetheart or a partner,” …
    “do you have a boyfriend or a girlfriend.”

    I guess “fuck buddy” is out of the question.

  2. Greta Samsa says

    I suppose they must believe – it’s obvious in the United States – that if they don’t acknowledge something it can’t exist.

    Where is the balance?

    Indeed. Next they should try to get balance into Astronomy – saying that planets are ellipsoidal is too political.

  3. anat says

    Hey, I did have a couple of teachers who used to address the student-body as ‘comrades’.

    I understand that addressing students as ‘boys and girls’ or ‘girls and boys’ tends to increase binary-gendered expression and performance – a lot more of ‘X is (only) for boys/girls’. Besides, having one inclusive word (such as ‘students’) makes the most sense. The kids are there to study and get an education, therefore ‘students’ is the most appropriate descriptor of who they are.

  4. Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden says


    There are reasons that I love you… rational reasons, even.

  5. Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden says

    @Giliell: I like it for that reason as well.