May 19, 2004

Values education in Australia

A rather disturbing media release from the AIDS Council of NSW, Howard Government encouraging homophobia in schools? prompted me to write to my old Sydney high school.

It seems that transgender individuals are only worth educating students about in the context of their unnatural sexual practices and their greater risk of transmitting disease.

Howard and his cronies should really pick up their cricket bats and fuck off to Zimbabwe. Robert Mugabe would no doubt approve of alarmist propaganda and could maybe advise on upping the ante.

It should not to fall to the trans community (as much as there is one) to educate school kids about gender diversity. Any government-sanctioned approach which clouds the picture, or encourages the cloud to linger, should be opposed loudly. But how?

No reply from the Jesuits and co. to my missive below:

Dear Mr. Hogan
(and BCCing past teachers of mine),

I would like to draw your attention to the attached media release from the AIDS Council of NSW which is triggering outrage from Australians world-wide.

I am writing to express severe concerns about the Federal Government’s stance on ‘values’ education in schools that appears aimed at perpetuating lesbian, gay and transgender negative stereotypes.

As a female transsexual from the class of ’89, happily married in a lesbian relationship, I feel obliged to write and point out the profound harm that the Howard Government is inflicting on Australian society through vilifying statements aimed, in part, at impressionable young boys. I hope that my alma mater will not been seen to go along with this quietly.

From London it seems that Australia is increasingly associated with intolerance, disrespect for diversity, and a lack of human compassion. It’s not all fair. I look back at Riverview fondly. I remain in contact with guys from my year and in many respects it was a great education, if not on gender.

I would hope that the school, with so many resources at its disposal, will take every opportunity to show leadership with regards to real education. I would like to offer my support in any efforts to ensure that your students have better access than most to unbiased information on diversity, especially within the current political climate. There was no support on offer when I went through Riverview. Unbiased exposure to gender and sexual diversity can only help boys grow into well rounded men, or occasionally, women. It happens…

Any assistance I can provide, please let me know. This is quite out of character for me to fire off something like this but the implications of the attached on my home town Sydney (where four M2F transsexuals were murdered last year) are truly sickening. Boys will be boys.

Best wishes,


Michela Ledwidge

Posted by .M. at May 19, 2004 09:44 AM | TrackBack


And to be fair, I did get a favourable response from the school.

Posted by: .M. at June 1, 2004 10:26 AM

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