Oslo School Board's Move to Participate in LGBT Pride Slammed for 'Sexualisation' of Kids

LGBT Flag - Sputnik International, 1920, 08.06.2022
Norway, like fellow Scandinavian countries, is seen as one of the world's most LGBT-friendly nations, with high societal acceptance and tolerance for same-sex marriage. Nevertheless, the participation of kids in the Pride parade proved to be a bridge too far even for some Norwegians.
The Oslo School Board has invited employees and students to take part in the Pride parade held on 25 June in the Norwegian capital.
This year will be the first time when the School Board will gather teachers and students and fly a single banner.
In a letter from the School Board, every school in its jurisdiction has been encouraged to participate. Furthermore, schools were also encouraged to celebrate the Pride movement in the run-up to the parade and create slogans together with students, referring to educational programmes by the Organisation for Sexual and Gender Diversity, which organises the Pride parade, national broadcaster NRK reported.
However, this move has prompted a backlash from teachers and parents alike.
According to Årvoll school teacher Anders Noreng the parade is only the tip of the iceberg.

“When you send children to a public school, you expect it to be neutral and not to push ideologies. So, either be honest and tell all the parents what's going on, or I think you are acting like a coward,” Noreng told NRK.

He is also critical of the fact that schools, through Pride, teaches children that there are more than two genders.
“There are many enduring teaching programmes where children learn that there are several genders and that you can decide for yourself how you want to switch back and forth. This is not scientifically proven,” he mused.
Noreng also stressed that he doesn't mind adults joining the parade as they choose for themselves, but he wouldn't send children there.
“From what I have seen and heard, parts of the parade are oversexualised. It is generally something you want to keep children away from”, he mused. “Personally, I find the Pride ideology intolerant. There is no room to think differently about all the allegations presented as facts. In a few years, I may not be allowed to teach because I do not support Pride,” he added.
Noreng was supported by Peter Risholm from the newly-started Parents Network, which aims to support parents in “meetings with Pride in kindergartens and schools”. Risholm was previously involved in a petition campaign against “gender-confusing education”.

“Like schools don't take part in 1 May parades, they shouldn't participate in Pride either,” he mused. “Pride promotes an ideological understanding of gender that is not correct. Children lack the prerequisites to understand the content of Pride, which is wrapped in a colourful glaze. They are used as a lever to introduce a policy that don't benefit us. It is deeply problematic,” Risholm mused.

Oslo School Board director Marte Gerhardsen retorted that the participation in the parade indicates that diversity is an important value.

“All employees and students should feel that they are included and are part of the community regardless of who they love,” Gerhardsen stressed.
She disagreed that Pride is pushing ideologies and called it “a celebration of diversity”.
“The parents are well aware that the we work for values ​​such as tolerance, human dignity and respect for diversity. This is part of our mission, and here the curricula are very clear. We use Pride as part of the teaching,” she concluded.
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Norway, like the other Scandinavian countries, is frequently referred to as one of the world's most LGBT-friendly nations, with high societal acceptance and tolerance for same-sex marriage.
In 1981, Norway became one of the first countries in the world to enact an anti-discrimination law explicitly including sexual orientation. Same-sex marriage, adoption, and assisted insemination treatments for lesbian couples have been legal since 2009. In 2016, Norway became the fourth country in Europe to pass a law allowing the change of legal gender for transgender people solely based on self-determination.
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