Devout Christian sues school ‘for making son, four, take part in LGBT parade’

  • london
  • February 2, 2023
  • Comments Off on Devout Christian sues school ‘for making son, four, take part in LGBT parade’
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A devout Christian mum has sued her son’s school after she claims he was forced to take part in a LGBT pride parade.

Izzy Montagu, 28, felt the event the ‘most serious of the deadly sins’, a court heard.

Heavers Farm Primary School in South Norwood, London, had sent a letter to parents on June 19, 2018 inviting their children to partake in a Pride march.

Pupils were encouraged to ‘celebrate the differences that make them and their family special.’

But Mrs Montague took issue with the Pride event and said her four-year-old son would not be taking part.

She contacted the school and said his involvement with the LGBT celebration would reflect ‘a public display of adherence to views which she did not accept.’

Her request was refused by the headteacher Susan Papas, leading to the mum replying with a length email, Central London County Court heard.

Mrs Montague met with Ms Papas on September 19 in which the headteacher’s daughter wore a t-shirt with the slogan: ‘Why be racist, sexist, homophobic, or transphobic when you could just be quiet?’, the court heard.

Judge Christopher Lethem described the mum and her husband as ‘devout born-again Christians, and they bear a belief that sexual relations should be abstained from or take place within a life-long marriage between a man and a woman and any activity outside those confines is sinful.

‘They also say pride is considered to be the most serious of the deadly sins.’

While giving evidence, Mrs Montague said: ‘It [the invite to the Pride event] felt like it was lecturing me about something to do with British values and somehow we weren’t adhering to British values.’

‘I clearly was not in the know about it, but this was the way, in my opinion, to try to indoctrinate it onto us by passing it off that it was part of law or part of British values, or it was part of the national curriculum, it was trying to sell something no one wanted to buy.’

She was then asked if the school was, as a whole, simply using the month of June to celebrate wider issues of diversity and tolerance.

Ms Montague replied: ‘I believe it’s using pride month and other issues around that time to sell pride month.

‘I think you can easily celebrate diversity without even having anything do with pride month.

‘A month that celebrates sexual lifestyles Is a problem in any month.’

Mrs Montague, supported by the Christian Legal Centre, is suing the school on the grounds of direct and indirect discrimination, victimisation and breach of statutory duty under the Education Act 1996 and the Human Rights Act 1998.

It is the first time that a UK court will scrutinise the legality of teaching about LGBT issues in primary schools.

The school has defended the parade and said it was ‘a celebration of what makes the children proud’.

Previously, headteacher Ms Papas told the BBC the march had ‘pushback’ from some parents ‘but most of the feedback was really positive’.

She had added: ‘With pride in British values we have a thread of work – on black history, disability awareness, 100 years since women got the vote – but generally talking to the children about matters of inclusion and diversity.’

The hearing continues.

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