London Catholic School Teachers Strike Over Cancelled LGBTQ Book Talk

  • by

Author Simon James Green was scheduled to visit John Fisher School in South London for World Book Day in March. A few days before the visit, though, the Education Commission of Southwark Archdiocese released a statement saying that the visit was “outside the scope of what is permissible in a Catholic school,” presumably because the author is gay.

The school’s governing body voted to go forward with the signing against the Archdiocese’s recommendation, which led to the diocese firing several governors (while others resigned) and overriding their vote, cancelling the visit.

Now, the school is closed due to a teacher shortage: the teachers are striking in protest. (Simon James Green provided brownies to the striking staff.)

Today @NEUnion members from John Fisher school are striking over my banned school visit and their sacked governors. They’re standing up for LGBT students everywhere who need to see the reality of their lives in books. Please show them how much support they have. pic.twitter.com/vUXBlwhx8t

— Simon James Green (@simonjamesgreen) April 28, 2022

The President of the National Education Union said,

“Staff and pupils are absolutely gutted about what has happened. Banning a gay author from attending a book talk in the school sends out a really horrific message to the young people in this school and particularly to those who may be gay or lesbian.

“I would like everybody to consider how those particular children feel right now.”

The school had recently received a report praising their dedication to inclusion and diversity.

You can read more about this story at BBC.

Find more news and stories of interest from the book world in Breaking in Books.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.