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Andrew Barr to bring more gay education to Canberra’s schools

By johnboy - 21 January 2011 36

Andrew Barr Twitter Feed

The Sydney Morning Herald has a story on a new program being rolled out in NSW schools to “encourage gay role models and open discussion of homosexuality in schools” called “Proud Schools”

The Canberra angle is that the Education Minister Andrew Barr has just tweeted that he’s hoping to bring the program to the ACT’s schools.

What’s Your opinion?


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36 Responses to
Andrew Barr to bring more gay education to Canberra’s schools
1
dustytrail 11:10 am
21 Jan 11
#

Yawn! I would imagine that school students are a lot less homophobic than the rest of the population. Why is Barr bothering with this … other than the fact that he is a homosexual?

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2
Captain RAAF 11:38 am
21 Jan 11
#

Not a hope in Hell!!!!

As much chance of me standing for this as there is of the Aboriginal flag being flown higher than the ANF at Charles Conder Primary, aint gonna happen!

Looks like another trip to the principles office…..

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3
Swaggie 11:59 am
21 Jan 11
#

If he had kids he’d know damn well that, as Dustytrail #1 says, kids don’t give a toss about being homophopbic. Barr is obviously under worked where there are a hundred different and more relevant programmes he could be rolling out across the schools and this is all he can think of.

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4
Thoroughly Smashed 11:59 am
21 Jan 11
#

Captain RAAF said :

Looks like another trip to the principles office…..

Maybe you can pick some up while you’re there.

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5
Waiting For Godot 12:11 pm
21 Jan 11
#

An ACT version being developed? Are all the references to Oxford St being replaced with Kambah Pool?

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6
trevar 12:33 pm
21 Jan 11
#

Captain RAAF said :

Looks like another trip to the principles office…..

Perhaps you could get some spelling lessons as well as some principles.

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7
Virgo1972 1:03 pm
21 Jan 11
#

Andrew Barr might be the Minister for Education and gay, but he’s not a parent. I hope he’s planning a lengthy timeframe for parental consultation prior to any implementation plan as majority approval will take a very long time.

I also object to the word ‘homophobic’. A phobia is a persistant, irrational, innate fear of something. I’ve heard lots of anti-gay comments in my time but i’ve never seen anyone actually have a phobic reaction to a gay or lesbian person. This is a term created by the gay community that is designed to envoke sympathy to an otherwise unworthy cause. I’m very keen to hear others opinions on this.

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8
PM 1:23 pm
21 Jan 11
#

One way of ensuring kids don’t group up to be homophobic is to treat homosexuals as equal, right?

In which case, why create such a fuss?

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9
Diggety 1:46 pm
21 Jan 11
#

It seems Barr is prioritising his personal lifestyle over those of the community of which he is supposed to represent.

There are far more important (and IMO appropriate) issues which need to be emphasised in schools; like reading, writing and mathematics for example.

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10
Tyg 2:43 pm
21 Jan 11
#

Hi, long time lurker, first time commenter.

While the younger generation is increasingly comfortable with same sex orientation there is still homophobia within Canberran schools. I don’t really understand why there is this fuss about the idea. All it’s going to be is a program about how calling someone a fag is hurtful. That hey kids, some people like to romance others of their own gender. That some of those people are successful in their professional lives and that there’s nothing wrong with being gay.

All of that seems self evident enough to me, but I’m not being brought up by someone telling me that if I was gay, I’d be kicked out of home, (as indeed one of my daughter’s friends was told). I’m not being called fag because I’m not good at football. I don’t have three of my fellow students following me own my way home after school and throwing homophobic slurs and small stones at me.

This proposed program will do no harm that I can see, and only should do good. If Barr’s own orientation has any influence on this, I would imagine that’s because he can remember being a gay teenager and feels empathy for those being bullied now.

I want my children to learn reading, writing and mathematics at school, but I also expect them to learn how to be civilised outside of family influence.

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11
Kayellar 2:55 pm
21 Jan 11
#

If any of you knew how painful and difficult it can be to be a gay kid in school, you would be embarrassed with reading these completely thoughtless statements.

The purspose of these programs isn’t to try and indoctrinate or ‘promote lifestyles’ but to combat the isolation that young LGBT people can feel in the playground. Sure there are some young people who are completely comfortable with their sexuality, out and proud at school. But there are also a great many more who struggle with their sexuality, listen to their identity being denigrated as an everyday playground slur (“that’s so gay” etc) and being made to feel inferior or having to hide who they are.

Having supportive school environments, where these young people spend nearly a 3rd of their waking lives during their formative years, is crucial in combat the fear, ignorance and intolerance that leads to so many of the problems many face later in life. I think Minister Barr should be applauded encouraging schools to be safe, not hostile, environments for their charges.

I am disgusted that any parent should feel it is ok to send their or any other child into environments where they should feel unsafe, invisible and worthless. Who knows, maybe it’s your child they are trying to support with this initiative.

For whatever reason heteronormativity and heterosexism (is that better than homophobia???) are still seen as acceptable. Racism, sexism and active discrimination or disadvantage of any other group has long since been unacceptable at school. It’s time sexual and gender identity was given the same respect.

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12
johnboy 2:59 pm
21 Jan 11
#

Apparently you lot are demonstrating the need for this program: http://twitter.com/#!/ABarrMLA

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13
Felix 3:52 pm
21 Jan 11
#

There might be some basis for wondering about how effective any program would be – I often fear that well-intentioned efforts like this sometimes backfire. For that matter, given the way ‘gay’ gets used as a pejorative, I still wonder if it wouldn’t be better to have settled on a ‘poofter power’ movement and spat that word, with defiance and pride, right back in the faces of the sad and insecure creeps who are unable to allow another person their freedom, but are the first to squeal if any of their percieved rights to be as obnoxious as they choode are in any way restricted.

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14
Captain RAAF 4:06 pm
21 Jan 11
#

trevar said :

Captain RAAF said :

Looks like another trip to the principles office…..

Perhaps you could get some spelling lessons as well as some principles.

Thats pretty rich, coming from a bloke that can’t spell Trevor correctly!

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15
Deref 5:08 pm
21 Jan 11
#

Bloody excellent. Prejudice has no place in Australia and the place to start is education in the schools.

Virgo1972 said :

I also object to the word ‘homophobic’. A phobia is a persistant, irrational, innate fear of something. I’ve heard lots of anti-gay comments in my time but i’ve never seen anyone actually have a phobic reaction to a gay or lesbian person. This is a term created by the gay community that is designed to envoke sympathy to an otherwise unworthy cause. I’m very keen to hear others opinions on this.

Object all you like. The fact is that people who are prejudiced against homosexuality (or skin colour for that matter) are displaying a persistent, irrational and innate fear of it. “Homophobia” is the correct and appropriate term.

Example in question: “an otherwise unworthy cause”. So combating prejudice against homosexuals is unworthy? Why? Do you believe combating racial prejudice is “unworthy” too?

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