Last year in Canada, a first grade teacher told a 6-year-old girl that "there is no such thing as girls and boys" and that "girls are not real and boys are not real." According to the girl's parents, this caused their daughter a great deal of distress and amounted to discrimination against her.
In fact, they filed a legal complaint against the school last week. Teacher Janine Blouin "discriminated against NB [the anonymous girl's initials] on the basis of sex and gender identity by using the authoritative platform of a teacher to publicly deny the existence of the female gender and biological sex, and to undermine the value of being biologically female and identifying as a female," the complaint reads. "Neither the school nor Ms. Blouin obtained parental consent to inform their young child that her sense of self as a girl was a fiction.
Ms. Blouin’s conduct undermined their daughter’s foundational concept of identity, as well as contradicted biological reality." When the parents complained, the teacher defended her actions, and the principal defended the teacher as well. The parents moved their daughter to a different school.
"If everyone has a gender identity, and gender identities are protected under the Code, then NB’s gender identity as a girl should be protected," Lisa Bildy, a lawyer with the Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms, the law firm representing the parents, said in a statement.
"If the School Board can accommodate the inclusion of trans and other gender identities into the classroom setting, then surely they can accommodate the inclusion of children who experience no discord between their biology and their sense of self."
According to the parents — Jason and Pamela Buffone — Blouin discriminated against their daughter in class during a lesson on gender identity in January 2018. The teacher showed a YouTube video entitled "He, She, and They?!? — Gender: Queer Kid Stuff #2."
Among other things, the video asserts that "some people aren't boys or girls" and that those who do not "feel like a 'she' or a 'he'" might not have a gender at all. Blouin continued gender identity lessons throughout the semester, including a whiteboard lesson on the supposed gender identity spectrum.
The teacher asked each student to identify where they fit on the spectrum, and NB put herself on the furthest end of the side marked "girl." Then the teacher told the class that "girls are not real, and boys are not real." This upset NB a great deal.
According to the Justice Centre, the 6-year-old girl "went home and told her parents, repeatedly asking why her identity as a girl was 'not real.' She stated that she was not sure if she wanted to be a mommy when she grew up, and asked if she could 'go to the doctor' about this issue.
NB also expressed feeling that she 'had to do something' about the fact that she is a girl. This followed a lesson by JB on the concepts of gender spectrum and sex changes."GO READ THE WHOLE THING.