A VICAR has resigned after a Church of England school made plans to keep a pupil’s transition secret from their classmates’ parents.
The Rev John Parker, who was a governor of a school in Essex, did not object to the student’s choice to transition from male to female, but butted heads with the bishop over his plans to keep the news secret.
A vicar resigned after clashing with a bishop over their plans to keep a pupil’s transition[/caption]
The school was not named to protect the privacy of the pupils.
Mr Parker was told in March an eight-year-old boy would become a girl, the Mail on Sunday reported.
It prompted the 49-year-old to ask why the school didn’t have a formal policy for school staff to deal with these situations.
He raised concerns on the fact there was no guidance on whether the pupil could use the female loos or with whom they would share accommodation with on overnight trips.
Mr Parker, a vicar of 14 years, claims his concerns were brushed off by the bishop.
It was reported the bishop would not give assurances to Mr Parker that parents and pupils would be told about the planned transition.
‘IT WAS A PLACE OF OPPRESSION’
The headteacher allegedly told the vicar the concerns he raised were “his personal views”.
Mr Parker ultimately decided to resign, where he was the governor for seven years.
He told the Sunday paper: “After the head told us about the plan to allow the pupil to transition, the school [turned] into a place where you did not [have] the freedom to question things.
“It was no longer a Christian place of grace and truth – it was a place of oppression.”
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He added: “I was basically told by my bishop that if I wished to faithfully follow the teachings of the Bible then I was no longer welcome in the Church.”
The Rev Tim Elbourne, director of education for the Diocese of Chelmsford, said the schools have to comply with the Equalities Act.
He said: “Church of England schools are inclusive environments which nurture pupils to respect diversity of all kinds.”
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