Sex education has been suspended in Isle of Man schools after a drag queen allegedly told 11-year-olds that there are 73 genders. The Telegraph’s Louisa Clarence-Smith has more.
The Isle of Man government has launched an independent review of its personal, social, health and economic (PSHE) curriculum after parents raised the alarm about the “graphic, disproportionate, indecent presentation” of sexual acts and different gender identities understood to have been taught in lessons.
Parents of pupils at Queen Elizabeth II High School in Peel, on the Isle of Man, have reported that Year 7 pupils were taught by a drag queen who told them there are 73 genders.
When one “upset” child responded and said “there’s only two”, the drag queen allegedly responded “you’ve upset me” and made the pupil leave the class.
Some 11 year-olds at the school were taught about oral and anal sex, while another group learned about sex change operations and were shown how skin graft taken from a girl’s arm could be used on an artificial penis, according to reports.
“A lot of children are just too traumatised to even talk to their parents,” Eliza Cox, vice-chairman of Marown Commissioners, told Energy FM Isle of Man. “As a parent, you don’t know what children are being taught.”
She said that one teacher on the island had told her she had to teach a group of boys and girls in Years 7 and 8 how to masturbate. Another teacher was said to be so uncomfortable with the content of the PSHE curriculum that they told pupils: “Please don’t listen to me” while they taught the lesson.
A petition by parents of pupils at Queen Elizabeth II High School has been launched calling for an “immediate investigation into the alleged actions of teachers delivering the age-inappropriate material to children”.
The petition, addressed to the school’s headteacher and signed by more than 500 people, stated: “We consider the attendance of a ‘drag queen’ in class and alienating students clearly confused about the information discussed during this session wholly inappropriate.
“How, who and why was this guest speaker permitted to discuss gender issues to an inappropriate child audience by an inexperienced and untrained adult?”
The Isle of Man Government said it would commission an independent review to “gain an independent understanding of what has taken place”.
Julie Edge, Minister for Education on the island, said the Department of Education, Sport and Culture has “taken the decision to pause all RSE delivery across primary and secondary schools, and will be unable to comment further until the facts have been established”.