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Ed Balls denies ‘watering down’ sex education for faith schools

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  1. “They also have to teach that there are different views on homosexuality. They cannot teach homophobia. They must explain civil partnership.”

    Do they have to teach that there are different views on race?

  2. “They also have to teach that there are different views on homosexuality. They cannot teach homophobia. They must explain civil partnership.”

    Do they also teach the different views on race? No. They will be taught the views of the teacher. They may not teach homophobia but a teachers opinion will be enough. We have come from homosexuality not being taught in schools to being taught the different views of it being right or wrong. The latter creating the atmosphere of homophobia. Why isn’t it being taught that being LGBT is just as normal as being straight. When will children be taught not to question themselves and then not having to view if they’re right or wrong?

    I have two words for Labour….. Sell Out!

  3. “Do they have to teach that there are different views on race? ”

    Precisely. This is just carte blanche for religious schools to promote homophobia and hatred. They might not ‘teach’ homophobia, but their views will be implicit in what they say and how they repreesnt LGBT people. It’s this subtle kind of homophobia that messes with children’s heads. I speak from experience…

  4. so many people will claim not to be homophobic when they express homophobic views, the churches are prone to this sadly
    this hurts people so why is it that faith schools are OK to get away with homophobia? Labour gets worse as time goes on
    I agree with Squidgy that homosexuality etc needs to be placed equally to heterosexuality plus people need to be taught that everyone’s different

  5. It is incoherent unworkable nonsense cooked up by a Government facing an election and desperately hoping to hang on to some religious votes.
    If these baleful institutions must exist let them teach that pixies live under the toadstools in their gardens if they wish. But again I say: they should either receive taxpayers’ money or teach supernatural and supernaturally inspired mumbo-jumbo. Not both.

  6. Patrick James 23 Feb 2010, 1:40pm

    As a Labour guy I lament this of course.

    I know very well that there is homophobia in the Labour party. However it is worthwhile to remember that the bill has to go through the House of Lords where the Conservative party peers will vote against it if they feel that “Faith” schools are having their “right” to discriminate against LGBT people undermined.

    So it is very possibly a bill drafted out of pragmatism but extremely infuriating none-the-less for that.

  7. Here is part of Catholic Doctrine on homosexuality:-

    104. A particular problem that can appear during the process of sexual maturation is homosexuality, which is also spreading more and more in urbanized societies. This phenomenon must be presented with balanced judgement, in the light of the documents of the Church. Young people need to be helped to distinguish between the concepts of what is normal and abnormal, between subjective guilt and objective disorder, avoiding what would arouse hostility. On the other hand, the structural and complementary orientation of sexuality must be well clarified in relation to marriage, procreation and Christian chastity. “Homosexuality refers to relations between men or between women who experience an exclusive or predominant sexual attraction toward persons of the same sex. It has taken a great variety of forms through the centuries and in different cultures. Its psychological genesis remains largely unexplained”. A distinction must be made between a tendency that can be innate and acts of homosexuality that “are intrinsically disordered” and contrary to Natural Law.

    Especially when the practice of homosexual acts has not become a habit, many cases can benefit from appropriate therapy. In any case, persons in this situation must be accepted with respect, dignity and delicacy, and all forms of unjust discrimination must be avoided. If parents notice the appearance of this tendency or of related behaviour in their children, during childhood or adolescence, they should seek help from expert qualified persons in order to obtain all possible assistance.

    The full document is here:-

  8. Mumbo Jumbo 23 Feb 2010, 2:09pm

    1. If the amendment has no effect, as Mr Balls implied during his interview this morning, then what was the point of introducing it?

    2. Mr Balls also said that faith schools cannot teach homophobia but can teach SAR in the context of their religious beliefs. How is it not homophobic to tell a child he/she is “intrinscally evil” or “objectively disordered”?

    3. Comment #1 by Dave. Exactly. I am heartily sick of having my equality by the subject of a debate that would never be allowed in any other context.

  9. This is so disgusting. A law that not only allows people to be homophobic but also allows them to educate the future children that it is okay to be homophobic.
    Does this mean that in non faith schools an athiest teacher should be able to teach the kids that religion is evil, an abomination and only for people who are truly lost – as thats what religous schools will say about us.
    Maybe we should let the BNP be able to go into schools and teach the kids their views on rascism too – i mean why is it okay to teach homophobia in schools but not rascism.
    This draft bill is disgusting and will lead to more gay men and women being bullied, battered and killed in the future – I hope the idiot who has drafted this bill realises he has our blood on his hands – I regret voting for labour and will never vote for them again after this.

  10. If faith schools want to keep this loophole in the law they should wave goodbye to state funding. Its one or the other. As Dr Romain says of course these schools will omit and twist facts; the opportunity is being presented to them on a f*cking plate.

  11. “However it is worthwhile to remember that the bill has to go through the House of Lords where the Conservative party peers will vote against it if they feel that “Faith” schools are having their “right” to discriminate against LGBT people undermined. ”

    The bill should not be meddled with to accommodate discrimination just so it can get through the unelected, undemocratic House of Lords.

    The abolition of the House of Lords is vital of course, but it is not relevant to this discussion.

  12. This is something the Tories would endorse and you can expect more of that once they’re in power, mark my word, especially with those religious bigot cultists in the House of Lords who Cameron wouldn’t dare confront. If Labour won’t, Conservatives most definitely will not. Don’t buy into the argument that Cameron and his party are for FULL equality, they’re not, just as Labour isn’t.

  13. Edd No Balls is a utter disgrace. What this really does is to give a rubber stamp to teach hatred of the LGBT and dress it up as sex education if they mention civil partnerships exist.

    This legislation allows for the next generation of bigots to be indoctrinated with state money. The government will now pay to create those who murder, attack and abuse us in legislation that goes beyond section 28. This used alongside Tory plans for more faith schools will see the next generation one of the most homophobic yet.

    You cant spin this Mr Edd No Balls NuLabour sold out LGBT.

  14. vulpus_rex 23 Feb 2010, 4:53pm

    Blinky (my main home is Morley even though my children go to school in London)Balls is just as desparate as the bullying Brown – they know they are F8*ked when Bottler the Bully eventually decides to call an election so in order to mitigate the coming Torygeddon they are appealing to one of their client groups.

    My money says that with this bit of posturing they are going after the muslim immigrant vote rather than the Catholics, but they couldn’t possibly admit to their unscrupulous gerrymandering.

    “all state-funded schools should be teaching tolerance and respect for diversity?”

    Classic New_Labour bullying – do it our way or we’re going to deprive your kids of an education.

  15. My only question to Mr Ball is: If the amendment is not “watering down”, what is the point of it?

  16. Oh balls!!! It’s “Balls”, isn’t it?

  17. what an utter disgrace.I am so fed up of our equality being debated and rejected time after time just because labour know that it is better to p1ss us off, such a small minority 3-7% than the gullaable religious majority, at the time of general election. Labour must honestly think that because we pecieve them as the best home in advancing gay equality we will vote for them out of fear of the conservatives, because to be honest what gay in their right mind would even consider.

    If every single gay person, roughly 5% of the population, votdere voted green, we would almost double the green vote, the greens would be a much greater force to be rekoned with and as the most progressive champions of our rights, we would have such a greater voice against these fools.

  18. Professor Bergman is just another homophobe
    there’s religious people who aren’t homophobes – remember?

  19. Looks like NuLabour selling out the LGBT is no longer a party secret anymore.

    Anybody who votes Labour now is a traitor against your own kind.

  20. As someone who attended both a Catholic school and college, I didn’t once experience a teacher or preacher telling me that homosexuality is a sin or against God. Even in Religious Studies, I was never told that once. I was also quite openly out in both school and college. Neither were particularly liberal (Proven by the fact that both refused to support Amnesty International because of their views on certain issues) so as such I am not sure that homosexuality in these schools at the moment is being taught about at all. However, I think the issue of contraception IS a big deal in these schools. Although it doesn’t apply to me as such, we were never taught how to use a condom correctly and our sex education consisted of a few classes in year 8 about how everything works down there and then one class in year 11 about how to have sex. By that point, there were at least four girls who were pregnant in my year group.

  21. Jan Bridget 23 Feb 2010, 8:56pm

    The following is the experience of a young lesbian who attended a catholic school:


    I was fifteen when I came out to my friends and family. I made the mistake of telling a girl I thought was my oldest and most trusted friend. I thought she would be able to help me because I was in need of a good friend to talk to. Instead she laughed in my face and made jokes behind my back.

    The bullying started around a week later. News spreads like wild fire. It started off as little things – students shouting ‘muff diver’, ‘dyke’ and ‘lesbo’. That didn’t bother me so much. It’s when the physical bullying started to happen that things got worse for me.

    Over two years I’ve been spat at, screamed at, beaten up, threatened with shards of glass and broken bottles, had a used tampon thrown at me and set on fire four times.

    On one of these occasions I was walking up the street to the bus stop to catch a bus to Halifax town centre, when some students came up behind me and started spraying aerosol of some sort onto the sleeve of my jacket. Then they came up again and I heard the spark of a lighter. My arm went up in flames and I panicked; throwing my arm around and hitting it to try and put out the fire. A crowd formed around me – some laughing, some cheering, some chanting ‘dyke’ and others just staring in horror. But no-one did anything. Eventually the fire was put out. I stood in the circle, all these laughing and staring faces all around me and I felt like the biggest freak show in the world. There were no teachers. It was just me in a sea of hateful faces. I felt like Frankenstein’s creature, cornered by the villagers with their torches and pitch forks.

    There were three other, similar, incidents; my long coat, my bag and my hair were set on fire, which is why I cut my hair short.

    Another time I was walking down the hallway, going back to a lesson after I’d been to the toilet, when five older boys put me up against a wall and surrounded me. One of them had a shard of broken glass and another stood with a sharpened pencil hidden in the sleeve of his jumper. The boy with the shard of glass kept waving it around in front of me while the one with the pencil sexually assaulted me. He stabbed me with the pencil and it went into my hand at least a half a centimetre. The scar’s still visible today; three years later.

    A lot of incidents at my school happened due to homophobic bullying. I tried at the beginning to tell someone, but the teachers pretended it wasn’t happening so they wouldn’t have to do anything. In a way, I think a lot of them were homophobic as well. I remember an incident in class and the teacher said to me, ‘well, you shouldn’t flaunt it then should you?’ I never flaunted it. I didn’t even properly come out of the closet, I was dragged out!

    Since then I never told another teacher about anything that was happening to me. My friends abandoned me for a long time because those that were bullying me also bullied them, assuming that they too must be gay. Instead of sticking by me, they left me at the most vulnerable time of my life.

    My mother had a hard time accepting that I was gay so I couldn’t go to her for support. I had absolutely no-one to talk to. I felt like the most alone and hated person on the planet, with no-one to tell me it would be alright or that my feelings were normal. I felt wrong and hated myself for being different.

    I went into a deep depression around this time, barricading the door to my room and sitting in the corner listening to depressing music and crying, silently, at how much they were hurting me. I threw myself against brick walls, creating a lot of bruises around my shoulders and back and one on the side of my face. When my mother asked me how I got them I would say it was just me and my friends being too rough while we were play fighting. I wanted so much to tell her what was happening but I was too scared.

    I started coming to GALYIC around Christmas time just before I turned 17; almost a year now. I only wished I’d found them three years ago when I needed them the most.

  22. theotherone 23 Feb 2010, 9:26pm

    people are on here DEFENDING Labour? You sad, sad fvcks.

    Fvck1ng traitors.

  23. no education programme will stop Jeni’s story being repeated again and again. It will just teach the little sods the anatomical words to go with muff-diver and dyke. The whole thing is a mess.

    And Mr Balls should join Tristram Gay in the queue at the Deed Poll office.

  24. Mumbo Jumbo 23 Feb 2010, 10:46pm

    The amendment has, in the last few minutes, been passed by 386 to 41 votes. As time had run out, it was not even debated.

  25. The following story is about a young straight girl who attended catholic school.

    She was taught that if you get raped its your own fault for doing something wrong. She left school with this protective shield round her: ‘just say no to sex’ She thought that was the answer.

    She met a man and because she didnt know about contraception she fell pregnant straight away. The first child was 5 years old when the father started taking his anger out on it violently. The woman thought back to what she had been told and remembered that men are morally different to women and a wife must obey her husband. Anyway, she already had two children with the man and divorce is a sin so there was nothing she could do. She found out about contraception but wondered is this wrong? Am I committing a sin? So another child was born.

    When the children got older they were told the same thing as she learned: sex is wrong, men always want sex so if you do the wrong things they will take it from you. Its up to you to be vigilant. One of the children was groomed by an older guy; she said no an awful lot but it didnt make a difference. She couldnt tell anyone because she had given the man temptation by laughing at his jokes and being alone in a room with him. She was sinful and dirty.

    Where does the story end?

    If the government cant wake up to this scenario, maybe they should think about their precious statistics: Teen pregnancy? Hate crime? These will be on the up if schools cop out of delivering factual unbiased education on sex and relationships.

  26. I hope Labour realises what they have done for a few religious votes.

    This is not just a LGBT issue many secular people will see allowing faith schools to teach contraception in a religious context unacceptable. What’s the point of a catholic school saying condoms and contraceptives exist but you will goto hell if you use them.

    Ed Balls must resign now for his lies on this to the public and the house of commons.

    LGBT Labour bust come out against their own party on this or look as tainted as LGBTory is.

  27. LGBT Labour must…not bust!

  28. Well up until this point I was prepared to vote Labour, better the devil you know and all that. However, I can no longer put my cross in the box next to the Labour candidate. I feel bad about that because he’s a good guy and a great MP but I cannot in good conscience vote for a party that would do this. Likely to be Lib Dems for me because Greens aren’t standing in my constituency.

    Just feel so disappointed and hurt by this.

  29. looks like Mr Balls isn’t on the ball with this one, don’t know why the ball is in his court. whats to say the sex-ed courses wont just super impose religious beliefs and barley dust over anything legitimate?

    The issue tends to suck a lot of….

    (sorry, could help the childish humor)

  30. Sister Mary clarence 24 Feb 2010, 11:06am

    Okay I have waited a whole 29 comment before saying this, BUT I told you so.

    It was I don’t know how long ago that I explained how New Labour worked, everything calculated and traded off to maximise the vote from each section of society, equality legislation bought in just at the time they could tell us it was because they cared about us, and just at the right time to ensure they could tell the God botherers it was because they had to – Europe was forcing them. Everything a balancing to ensure that Labour was all things to all people.

    Well, the gay vote has ebbed away a bit and therefore we don’t deserve the same attention, so romance over, we’re dumped.

    Sorry girls, its never easy breaking up.

    If its any consolation they don’t give to sh1ts about the God bothers either really. They will do to them what they have done too us.

    Chocolate or ice cream is sometimes the best way to get over a messy breakup

  31. Why not both Sister Mary… Chocolate And ice cream. Hell why need an excuse… lol

  32. i think i will write a book which has quotes in it from torah, koran and bible, but change it slightly……

    “and if a man be with a jew, it is abhorrent, they shall certainly be put to death.”

    “if you meet a muslim then topple a wall onto them, and if they are not dead, then topple a wall onto them again until they are dead.”

    “Even as the christians and the cities about them in like manner, giving themselves over to religious speak, and going after strange ideas, are set forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire.”

    it would probably be banned for being anti religious, inciting hatred, so why exactly these books of hate can even be published is beyond my comprehension.


  33. 23 Feb 2010 : Column 258. (question after amendment 70 was passed)

    Mr. Laws: Will the Minister clarify, in the light of amendment 70, which has been passed today, whether it will be possible for faith schools to teach that homosexuality is wrong?

    Note most of MPs who voted against are Lib Dems

    Mr. Coaker: Such schools could say that that is the view of their particular religion, but what they will not be able to do is to state that that is the only view that exists. They will not be able to say that other religions do not have different views or that people of no faith do not have different views.

  34. A breakdown of party voting can be found here:
    (but note the page is (at present) incorrectly titled with Rental Accommodation stuff)

  35. Of course, as was expected, every single Tory MP present voted to retain amendment 70. Where was ‘Call me Dave’ with all his protestations about support for gays, and where was Nick Herbert who is trumpeting the prospect of new pro-gay laws? They were, of course, not present. Nor would we expect them to be, for they are not to be believed. The only party to which any credence can be given is the Liberal Democrats. We need people like David Laws, Evan Harris and Lord Lester.

  36. Neville – and most of Labour voted for it, please don’t leave the whole story here. Where was Gordon Brown you ought to ask as well. For all the badgering some of you give the Tories you make it look like Labour are perfect. Newsflash folks – They ain’t – There even worse! They suck you in, then spit you out.

    For all their faults least you know where you are with the Tories.

  37. The vote yesterday was reminiscent of a vote on 25 July 2000, when the Labour Party abandoned their principles in delaying the repeal of Section 28. Then, too, the Lib Dems did the decent thing.

    Check out this link for the vote breakdown in 2000 :-

  38. “For all their faults least you know where you are with the Tories.”

    Yes they’re a load of homophobes.

  39. Is it me or does Ed Balls have that harry Enfield look about him…?

  40. They are a spineless lot! None of them seem able to stand up to the religious bigots. Meanwhile, kids get bullied in schools and obvious gays get beaten up. None of them will get my vote!

  41. theotherone 24 Feb 2010, 5:58pm

    ‘Is it me or does Ed Balls have that harry Enfield look about him…?’

    I thought he looked like a fvck1ng freak myself.

  42. Neville judging by several comments from you on this news site previously, I imagine you would be voting for the Klu Klux Clan.

    I can’t imagine the lib dems welcoming you with the sort of views you have expressed here

  43. theotherone 25 Feb 2010, 12:49am

    oh neville i never realised that the Lib Dems where the party of choice for Racist Lack Wits like yourself.

  44. Oh, Don Jose, where is Escamillo?

  45. Oh, theotherone, tell me is it ‘Eyeless in Gaza’ or ‘Clitless in Gaza’? I sure you will have the answer to that one, and with your erudition you will be able to tell me the source!

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