A devout Christian mother was banned from her four-year-old son’s school after complaining that he was compelled to take part in an LGBT pride parade, a court heard.
Izzy Montague, 38, said she was told by the headteacher of Heavers Farm Primary School in South Norwood, southeast London, that her son could not opt out of the event in June 2018.
The school sent a letter to parents on 19 June inviting them to partake in a Pride march and ‘celebrate the differences that make them and their family special.’
Mrs Montague contacted the school ‘and asked for her son to be excused attendance on 29 June as they were concerned about him being involved of a public display of adherence to views which she did not accept.’
Her request was refused by the headteacher Susan Papas, Central London County Court has heard.
Giving evidence Ms Papas said the mother was banned from the school because staff ‘did not feel safe around her’.
Ms Papas told the hearing the aim of the parade was ‘to pull everything together, to have a happy cheerful event at the end of the year.
‘Where we could bring everyone together and say they were proud of what they had learnt and reflect on topics we’ve covered over the year, bringing everyone together with everyone’s families.’
Ian Clarke, representing the school, asked the headteacher: ‘What was the purpose behind the teaching of the home in reception?
Ms Papas replied: ‘The teaching in reception was simply to know there were different kinds of families in the class and other families existed in the world.’
Judge Christopher Lethem said: ‘So, no hierarchy of equalities?’
Ms Papas said: ‘In reception level it was just how they could all feel comfortable that other families exist or if their family didn’t look like the others, that’s ok.’
Mr Clarke asked: ‘Who do you mean by they?’
Ms Papas: ‘The children. So, from the point of view of the children, no matter what their family may look like they feel comfortable and ok that it’s acceptable as a family.’
Mrs Montague has claimed the school ‘picked on’ their son, after her complaint was made by giving him a three-hour detention.
She was banned from the school after a series of concerns surrounding her behaviour towards staff, the court heard.