UK Labour leader Keir Starmer says he opposes 'gender ideology' in schools—declines to say he would ban it

Labour leader Keir Starmer has made it clear that he is against the teaching of "gender ideology" in British schools. He stopped short, however, of confirming that the party would adopt the Conservatives' proposed ban if elected.

Starmer's comments came after Labour shadow education secretary Bridget Phillipson said the Tories' guidelines contained some good ideas, but "drifted far too much into partisan and unnecessary language." She, too, refused to say whether the party would support the amendments to the existing guidelines. After being asked three times, she simply repeated, "There are trans people within society and their existence should be recognised."

While visiting a school in Kettering, Northants on Monday, Starmer said in no uncertain terms that he was "not in favour of ideology being taught in our schools on gender." When asked by the Telegraph whether that meant he would back the Tories' proposal, he said a decision would be made eventually.

"I think it's in consultation so there isn't an outcome of that yet," he said, "but I do not believe we should be teaching gender ideology in schools." 

According to the Telegraph, the current relationships, sex, and health education guidelines allow for the teaching of "the facts and the law about sex, sexuality, sexual health and gender ideology in an age-appropriate and inclusive way." Under the Tories' proposed changes, students would still learn about gender reassignment, however schools would be required to "teach the facts about biological sex and not use any materials that present contested views as fact, including the view that gender is a spectrum."

When asked how the party defined "gender ideology," a Labour spokesperson said "there are people who struggle with their gender identity and that is a lived reality that education of course should reflect in an age-appropriate way." They went on to sugest that the current guidelines were adequate.

Image: Title: Starmer
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