The topic of gender is complex and has evolved significantly in recent years for the worse. For this reason, parents need to understand that discussions about gender diversity and the number of genders recognised as part of social and cultural discourse are not scientifically based. This is not a question that these discussions may differ from traditional binary concepts about human sexuality. What we are witnessing in our schools is the propagation of cultural constructs taught as scientific facts when they are not.
Unfortunately, in Malta, there is at least one government middle school in the North of Malta that is teaching these gender constructs as something that is scientifically proven. At this particular school, secondary school kids were taught that there are 72 different genders. This is pure hogwash. While it is a good thing that discussions about gender diversity, gender identity, and gender expression are included in our school curriculum, students should be only taught what is scientifically correct. Telling students that there are 72 genders is equivalent to teaching pupils that the earth is flat or that the world was created 4,000 years ago.
While it is crucial for schools to promote inclusivity and understanding, fostering the gender propaganda that is being sold on the internet will lead our educational system nowhere. The discussions about inclusivity should create a more tolerant and accepting society where individuals can express their gender identity. However, this cannot be done at the expense of science. There is a scientific consensus that biological sex is categorised as male or female, and this is based on physical and genetic characteristics.
The social sciences and those teaching well-being present gender more complex and multifacetedly. Their teaching goes beyond biological sex. Gender is considered a social and psychological construct that can be diverse. Therefore, they speak about different sexual identities such as transgender, non-binary, genderqueer, and more. In the process, we are ending in a situation where the number of genders recognised varies across cultures and communities. For this reason, our secondary schools must approach this subject with sensitivity and respect for students and their parents. Schools should not let individuals who believe that queer sexual identities have a biological basis, and therefore a scientifically proven, to influence kids.
Some people, including many within the LGBTQ+ community, advocate for recognising multiple genders to reflect the diversity of human experiences better. The issue of how to approach this in schools can be a matter of local policy and societal norms. Educators need to be informed about the subject and provide a balanced and scientific perspective that allows students to understand the scientific aspects of biological sex. Indulging on issues of gender identity and expression that are not scientifically proven can confuse children.
It’s crucial to note Richard Dawkins’ views on the matter. Dawkins is highly influential in biology and evolution theory. He is highly critical of these gender views. Dawkins refuses to accept that gender has evolved and diversified. He has a very strong viewpoint on this subject. In biology, there are only two sexes, male and female. And this is what students should be taught at our secondary schools.
Ultimately, the curriculum and approach to teaching about gender should be determined through open and informed discussions involving educators, parents, students, and relevant experts. Unfortunately, in Malta, parents are being kept out of this discussion.
The goal of education should be to foster a respectful and inclusive educational environment. Still, our students are fed concepts of diversity that do not conform to a healthy learning environment because they are diametrically opposite to all biological principles.