Preschool Case Studies
Preschool Case Studies

Secret ‘queer thinking’ lessons for early childhood teachers

A professional development course for preschool teachers that requires them to "secretly" study subjects including "queer thinking" and "living non-binary" will be subject to an urgent review by the state's top education authority.

The NSW Education Standards Authority (NESA) has launched an investigation into how a company behind the course, which includes modules titled My Friend Has Two Mums and Gender: Sexuality in Early Childhood, was accredited after the issue was raised by The Daily Telegraph.

The course provider, Multiverse, was approved by NESA in January last year to offer ­accredited courses to early childhood teachers.

 

Early childhood teachers studying subjects like queer theory will be reviewed by education officials. Picture Rohan Kelly
Early childhood teachers studying subjects like queer theory will be reviewed by education officials. Picture Rohan Kelly

 

"(We are) investigating to confirm that the course referred to meets the requirements of Multiverse's endorsement as a provider of NESA-registered professional development," a NESA spokeswoman said yesterday.

According to Multiverse's website, the sexuality modules help train teachers to work with same sex parents, openly gay and lesbian colleagues and children who identify with a different gender.

Modules include Queer Thinking in Early Childhood, Living Non-Binary, Intersex Identities and Queer Pedagogies and are administered by self described activist Red Ruby Scarlet - who also goes by the name of Dr Miriam Giugni.

 

The course assists teachers to deal with things like children who identify with a different gender. Picture: Liam Driver
The course assists teachers to deal with things like children who identify with a different gender. Picture: Liam Driver

 

However the courses NESA assessed when approving Multiverse to teach early childhood educators were limited to Painting, Drawing & Story Telling and Playing with Clay - not the Sexuality in Early Childhood course.

The course website states: "Once you have registered for this course you will be added to a secret Facebook Group called 'My Friend Has Two Mums 2020' where discussion about the content will take place.

"The Facebook group is secret so that participants have a safe space to learn, discuss and share."

The course is completed online and counts for 20 hours of the 100 hours of professional training that teachers must complete each year to maintain their accreditation.

There have been 30 preschool teachers in NSW who have undertaken the course.

 

NSW Legislative Council member Mark Latham will put up a bill to stop the courses. Picture: AAP Image/Bianca De Marchi
NSW Legislative Council member Mark Latham will put up a bill to stop the courses. Picture: AAP Image/Bianca De Marchi

 

One Nation MP Mark Latham told The Telegraph he will introduce a private member's bill in NSW parliament calling for a complete audit of all NESA-approved courses and ban the promotion of gender fluidity in schools.

"What they are trying to run here is a political indoctrination camp for three and four year olds," he said.

A spokeswoman for the organisation You're Teaching Our Children What said these courses promoted the view gender is fluid.

"Programs like these train teachers to affirm and promote radical views of gender and sexuality," she said.

Originally published as Secret 'queer thinking' lessons for early childhood teachers



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