Pity the children. Sympathize with their parents, I thought, as I listened to the audio of the meeting of the trustees at the TCDSB, Thursday February 18. A contractor, commissioned to report on the state of ventilation systems in several of the Boards schools, was being scolded for not immediately knowing what the municipal building code said about a particular type of window opening permitted.
It was accompanied by the interruptive customary theatrics designed to manifest concern by a trustee whose legal and moral tenure in office is allegedly under investigation by the Integrity Commissioner.
From a ventilation perspective, especially in a Covid19 environment, the school in question is not a healthy place, or so the report seemed to suggest.
But this is a “dysfunctional” Board run by some obstructionist trustees whose adherence to a Strategic Plan consistent with the Board’s Mission Statement seems to take a distant second place to… anything else other than children’s health, social and academic development.
Alas, it appears to be part of the social condition prevailing because people no longer speak up. And being a parent is a taxing calling. My grandparents used to say: “little kids, little problems… then they get older…” Fill in the rest.
That may be why Catholics had a perceived built-in, constitutionally guaranteed, advantage for a model that also involved their religion: a faith-based, “Church- School-Home” model to balance the “excesses” or “shortcomings” of the simpler Home-School state variety.
This latter model is being overrun by activists, who, like their “co-professionals” in the Law Society of British Columbia, cannot even agree on the pronouns to use in their work environment – the Courts. Under the pretext of freedom of self-identification, they are attempting a purge of concepts behind words, the value structure words have represented and the new norms words may advocate.
A nine-year-old child feels himself more feminine and asks his parents to arrange a sex change (actual case).
Those activists refuse to accept that it may be desirable to provide a social ethic construct as a context for some counselling. Phobia, they claim. Better to just change the gender-based pronouns (and adjectives) so that no one’s feelings get hurt is their preferred [facile] solution.
Except that, unlike the French, Italian, Spanish (and other European language) models based on female/male biological distinctions, the “with it” movement cannot point to a readily acceptable alternative.
Earlier this month, New York University’s Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development asked students “to identify as one of at least 30 genders in a survey to help build a more affirming environment.” The University of Rhode Island, Gender and Sexuality Center, provides a glossary for 38 “Trans* Identities and Lives”.
The other day, Corriere Canadese reported the intervention of a teacher in a classroom of six-year-olds, in Ottawa, who alleged that there are 58 genders. Facebook, until 2015, recognized over 71 for people signing up on its platforms. There is even a Wikia site providing definitions for all imaginable variations of gender expressions – as passing and short-lived as they might be.
On February 22, the British online publication of the Daily Mail, reported on a BBC video that claimed, “there are over 100, if not more, gender identities now.” Currently, six genders are officially recognized by the Royal College of General Practitioners, the article goes on to say. And you think kids are confused?
The Daily Mail says that, between 2017 and 2018, 2,519 young people were referred to the gender development service at the Tavistock and Portman NHS Foundation Trust in London.
A foundation called Transgender Trend represents families that are concerned about the surge in diagnosing young children as transgender.
Founder Stephanie Davies-Arai said: “People are free to identify as anything they like but this does not change the reality that there are only two sexes.”
The TCDSB has some of the most dilapidated buildings housing students in health risk structures. Perhaps Director Browne can point to studies and surveys like those above that the Board has in store to “improve” the mental health of students we entrust to the care of his organization.