Gender Bender Agenda

Gender Bender Agenda

Gender Bender Agenda

by Dr Kevin Donnelly

A NSW school teacher has created a public furore after asking
year 9 students to imagine that they lived in a world where
heterosexuality is the exception and, as a result, they are
surrounded by gays and lesbians.

Apparently, the teacher’s aim was to have students
imagine what it was like to be a minority group and, hopefully,
to teach them to be more sensitive and accepting of different
sexual practices and lifestyles.

Lesbian and Gay Equality Sign

Should parents be concerned? If the NSW teacher’s
actions were an isolated incident, then parents would have little
to worry about. Unfortunately, this is not the case. The reality
is that governments and teacher groups around Australia, for some
years, have pushed the rights of gays, lesbian, bisexual and
transgender people on the basis that there is nothing wrong with
such lifestyles.

The Australian Education Union is a strong advocate of a
politically correct approach to gender. Under the heading Sex
Education, the union’s policy paper argues that gays,
lesbians, bisexual and transgender individuals have a right to
teach sex education and that such learning should be "positive in
its approach".

As a result, traditional literature, such as
Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, is attacked for promoting
heterosexual love and books such as The Magic Faraway Tree and
traditional fairytales such as Jack and the Beanstalk are
attacked for presenting boys as physically assertive.

Education Queensland is also a strong advocate of this
politically correct approach to gender issues. The
department’s internet site dealing with gender and
schooling urges teachers to "examine and challenge existing
gender and power relations" on the assumption that it is better
to have "culturally diverse masculinities".

As such, Queensland teachers are told that it is unproductive
for boys to be physically assertive, to play contact sports and
to do manual studies, as such activities reinforce sexual
stereotypes associated with what is termed "biological

The PC approach to gender education is to argue that being
male or female is socially constructed. As a result, it is
possible for teachers and schools to re-educate students away
from traditional roles in favour of alternative lifestyles.

The South Australian Education Department also argues that
gender is a social construct and not a result of biology. As
stated in the Gender Equity section of the South Australian
webpage: "The current construction of the gender order also
supports heterosexuality as the norm. Social constructions of
advantage and disadvantage are of human making and therefore
capable of change."

The belief is that heterosexuality should not be privileged
and that generally accepted gender roles reflect inequitable and
unjust "dominant power relation[s]" and education must be
directed at the "deconstruction and reconstruction" of such

Early last year, Prime Minister Howard suggested that schools
might be too politically correct and that parents might find many
of the values promoted unacceptable. In relation to the gender
agenda, it appears he is correct.

Reprinted by kind permission of
Dr Kevin Donnelly,
former chief-of-staff to Federal Employment
Kevin Andrews, and author of "Why Our Schools Are