Christian parents were reportedly not consulted before the St Mary's Prittlewell Church of England Primary School planned to use the book entitled, 'My Shadow is Pink,' written by Scott Stuart, as a "stimulus" for activities to celebrate World Book Day on Thursday, Mar. 2. As a result, Stephen and Joanne Evans got angry which led them to withdraw their child to the school.
Issue of Parents on Gender Identity-themed Book
In Southend-on-Sea, the four-year-old son of Stephen and Joanne Evans enrolled in the St. Mary's Prittlewell Church of England Primary School. A report from the Christian Today stated that Evans claimed that the school did not consult the parents ahead of time about their plan to use the book 'My Shadow is Pink' written by Scott Stuart, as a "stimulus" as part of its celebration of World Book Day on Mar. 2. In addition, a statement made by the father of the boy in the book says that "Your shadow is pink, I see now it's true, it's not just your shadow, it's your innermost you."
This situation pushed Evans to withdraw their son and ask permission from the school. However, the head teacher suggested they read the Church of England's school policy, "Valuing All God's Children," as well as materials from "Living in Love and Faith," which included the bishop's support for a "radical new Christian inclusion." The Evans, supported by Christian concern, have communicated their concerns to the CofE's chief education officer, Nigel Genders. The Church of England has verified that the genders have received a letter from the Evans and that a response will be sent "in due course." They also stated that they are not the only ones who think the book is challenging to understand and should not be read to four-year-old children, particularly in a Christian educational setting. Concerns have been voiced by parents of both Christian and non-Christian children, but the chief teacher has disregarded them.
Moreover, in a recent report in Christianity Daily, Pastor Shane Idleman of Westside Christian Fellowship believes that a book promoting LGBT ideology would not benefit children, particularly those who struggle with gender dysphoria or same-sexual orientation. He also considers it a form of child abuse against children. "This book, what you are allowing in the schools, is a form of child abuse. It's mental, emotional child abuse," Pastor Idleman added.
Stephen and Joanne Evans, parents of the four-year-old student of St Mary's Prittlewell Church of England Primary School, expressed anger regarding the decision of the school to include a book entitled 'My Shadow is Pink' written by Scott Stuart as a "stimulus" in their activities on World Book Day. The parents claimed that they were not consulted ahead of time and stated that four-year-old children should not be exposed to Gender Identity-themed books. The situation also led Evans to withdraw their child from school.
Also Read: State Farm Withdraws Support for GenderCool Project's LGBT Books for Children Amid Conservative Backlash
Head Teacher, Leishia Lewis' Response Against Parents
According to Christian Concern News, Leisha Lewis wrote the letter in response to Evans' concerns that their children could be influenced by transgender ideology. It illustrates how the Church of England's (CofE) persistent departure from biblical teaching on human sexuality will be weaponized against parents who believe people are born male and female. In addition, she referred to the CofE's guidelines for schools titled "Valuing All God's Children," which states that affirmation should be given to children as early as five if they express a desire to identify as transgender.
The guidance has been used multiple times to argue against Christian parents who have voiced concern over the possibility that their children may be taught transgender doctrines, such as Nigel and Sally Rowe and Calvin and Nichola Watts. Accordingly, they recognize that the Bible is essential to an individual's understanding and living out the Christian faith. However, although people are all unified in this belief, they interpret the Bible uniquely. At St. Mary's, they will reportedly continue to build a school community that is centered on learning and listening together; to God, to one another, and the world around them.
Related Article: Pastor Shane Idleman of Westside Christian Fellowship Claims That Allowing to Read A Book Promoting LGBT Ideology is 'Child Abuse'