Schools told not to teach about gender identity

Schools in England should not teach about gender identity, according to new draft guidance from the government.

Government sources told BBC News about plans to ban sex education for under-nines, as well as teaching about gender identity, on Wednesday.

Confirming the plans on Thursday, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said the new guidance would ensure children were not “exposed to disturbing content”.

Some teachers have said there is no evidence of a widespread problem.

Teaching unions have said the review was “politically motivated”.

Secondary-school pupils will learn about protected characteristics, such as sexual orientation and gender reassignment.

But the updated guidance makes clear schools “should not teach about the concept of gender identity”, the government says.

It said it was right to take a “cautious approach”, adding teaching materials that “present contested views as fact – including the view that gender is a spectrum” should be avoided.

The government is also strengthening rules to make it easier for parents to access teaching materials from schools, to see what their children are learning.