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22 July 2019, 15:20 | Updated: 22 July 2019, 15:24
Nottingham City Council says "twice as many" counter protesters turned out to stand against a demonstration against LGBT-inclusive lessons at a primary school in the city.
Demonstrators say that relationship and sex education lessons should not be taught to primary age children, and say that children should not be taught that to be lesbian, gay, bisexual or transsexual is OK.
They have been protesting on Arleston Drive, Wollaton; the same road as Fernwood Primary School where the RSE lessons have been taking place.
In September 2020, new government guidelines on RSE lessons mean that schools will have to carry age-appropriate LGBT-inclusive teaching in their lessons.
Ayaz Ahmed has led the protest, though it is not thought he has children at Fernwood School:
Counter protesters say that the demonstrations against LGBT lessons do not speak for parents of children at the school and that they fully support the lessons going ahead.
Brett is a dad of two children who go to the school. He is also gay. He's told Capital the protests are "about bigotry and homophobia."
“This is about bigotry and homophobia” - Brett is a gay parent with children at Fernwood Primary in #Nottingham and told us what he thinks about today’s protests there...#CapitalReports pic.twitter.com/ZqOQJHLbZR— Capital East Mids News (@CapitalEMNews) July 22, 2019
Nottingham City Council has released a statement saying that more people were a part of the counter protest than the original one.
They also say it was calm and respectful.
Here's the full statement:
The leader of @MyNottingham's responded to today's protests outside Fernwood Primary in #Nottingham. David Mellen says he's "pleased the overwhelming majority of people were calm and respectful of each other." #CapitalReports pic.twitter.com/0o9t5YhXG8— Capital East Mids News (@CapitalEMNews) July 22, 2019
Nottingham South MP Lilian Greenwood has also responded to claims she is "a liar" and has been "spreading hate" in the city, made by Ayaz Ahmed.
She says no one has been in touch with her with concerns about the lessons, and has vowed to fight for equality.
I’m so proud of the Fernwood parents inc @Brett73 & the local community who have shown their support for the school and the work it is doing to promote inclusion and respect for all families. But I will happily meet any parents with concerns about #RSE teaching in their school https://t.co/aZrhqBtjGb— Lilian Greenwood (@LilianGreenwood) 22 July 2019
Let’s get this clear. If you want to remove me as the MP for Nottingham South or as the @UKLabour candidate at the next election because I stand up for equality. Bring. It. On. pic.twitter.com/nn1WFswJiz— Lilian Greenwood (@LilianGreenwood) 22 July 2019