Birmingham & Black Country

Psychologist investigated for LGBT teaching comments

Still from Youtube video Dr Kate Godfrey-Faussett - RSE Workshop - What will our children be learning about in school? published by City of Knowledge Academy Image copyright City of Knowledge Academy
Image caption Dr Kate Godfrey-Faussett spoke about her Stop RSE campaign in Birmingham earlier this year

A psychologist who claimed sex and relationship education was causing children "harm" is being investigated by her professional body.

The British Psychological Society (BPS) said it was "concerned" by views expressed by Dr Kate Godfrey-Faussett.

It comes as protests by some parents against relationships and equality classes at Parkfield School in Birmingham have spread across the UK.

Dr Godfrey-Faussett said she was "shocked" by the BPS statement.

The psychologist, who converted to Islam more than 20 years ago, has worked in classrooms and lectured about the teaching of sex education.

In a talk, held in Birmingham and published online, she made reference to protests at Parkfield Community School and claimed sex education in the UK was "potentially sexualising" children, "redefining traditional families" and creating "confusion" that could lead to "psychological damage, spiritual damage and also physical harm".

In another, she said the lessons were part of a concerted effort of "queering the Muslim community" and called being transgender a "mass delusion".

She also said "work psychologically or in a mental health capacity" can help Muslims who are attracted to the same sex.

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Media captionWhat is in the books that Parkfield parents are protesting about?

In a statement, the BPS said it was "extremely concerned" about some comments.

It said it believed Dr Godfrey-Faussett's comments were "unethical and potentially harmful" and go against its commitment that "no sexual orientation or gender identity is portrayed as inherently preferable to any other".

The BPS said it was launching an investigation and had referred Dr Godfrey-Faussett to the regulator Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC).

The HCPC said it was aware of the concerns and was looking into whether it needs to take any action.

Dr Godfrey-Faussett said the BPS had not "clearly outlined" what she is claimed to have said which was "so concerning".

"Regarding [relationship and sex education] I believe these subjects should be the preserve of the parent to teach their child not the state," she said.

Image caption Protesters outside Parkfield School said lessons on same-sex relationships were not age appropriate

Dr Godfrey-Faussett had petitioned against a decision made by MPs for relationships education to be compulsory in primary schools.

There have been protests outside Parkfield School over its No Outsiders programme, with some parents claiming the lessons were age-inappropriate and incompatible with Islam.

Members of the LGBT community said the protests are "really distressing and really upsetting".

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