curriculum, human sexuality, family life, inclusivity, transgender, school forms, advocacy
Tara: How about the curriculum? Did you feel that the school did any work around making space for C’s lesbian family? Or um, was the curriculum still a place as a frontier?
Mary: That’s a great question! Um, I, well, we did start when she started the school, one of the very first things I did was I, I made an appointment to see her religion teacher.
Mary: Who is a new colleague of mine, and a wonderful person. Um, so I sat down with her, probably in the third week of September, and, and um described our family to her. And uh, because I know, I’ve taught grade 7 religion before, and I know there’s a component of it about family life, and human sexuality, and, and all of that kind of thing. And I wanted the teacher to be aware of uh, the situation, you know, in C’s life so that any teaching around family would be inclusive of our family as well, so that C would not feel like, you know, there was something bizarre about her family. She doesn’t anyway-
Mary: But, and she knows that not the entire world doesn’t operate on the way that--
Tara: Same principles.
Mary: Yes. But uh, but the teacher was very receptive and very open to it. She recently had to do a project on, on types of families, and that kind of thing. And we noticed that in the, there was a letter that came home about, that you know, they would be discussing different sexual and family and relational, relationship issues, and that kind of thing. And just to get our permission, and that to proceed. And you know, C like a typical pubescent 12 year old was like, “I don’t wanna talk about it! Just sign it! I don’t wanna - you know” um, which was kind of funny. But we noticed that in, in the whole thing of, of um, of gender language and that, there was nothing about Transgender people.
Mary: So we just penciled that in. And um, you know, I haven’t heard back from the teacher, I’m sure she, she’s the kind of wonderful person who just “Oh yeah, I should have done that!”
Tara: There’s that too, yeah.
Mary: So we just, you know, it’s in those kind of quiet ways that we just, we just want to keep pushing the envelope and hoping that, and so far people have been very receptive to whatever we have asked. So in terms of other curricular things, I don’t know, you know, whether you know, family dynamics come up in math, or anything.
Mary: I’m sure in some language studies they will. But we hopefully have given C the tools and the confidence to, to you know speak up. She’s always going to be a minority
Mary: In terms of her family situation, but she’s very uh, articulate, and I’m sure that she’ll, she’ll let them know when they aren’t representing all of the people in the room.