NSW school sparks outrage over ‘concerning’ changes to Mother’s Day event

NSW school sparks outrage over ‘concerning’ changes to Mother’s Day event
NSW school sparks outrage over ‘concerning’ changes to Mother’s Day event

A private school in NSW is facing backlash after renaming its Mother’s Day Stall to a “Family Gift Stall” in the hopes of becoming more inclusive. 

Hunter Valley Grammar School will offer a stall on Friday for students from kindergarten to grade six, with $12 gifts for children to buy ahead of Mother’s Day this Sunday. 

According to the school, the name change is intended to “celebrate loved ones,” but some mothers are furious at the move, labelling it as “upsetting” and “concerning.” 

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NSW private school renames Mother’s Day Stall to Family Day Stall

A promotional email was sent out to parents at the school explaining the reason for the stall’s name change.

“In the lead up to Mother’s Day, the Junior SRC will be holding a Family Gift Stall,” the email read. 

“The purpose of the stall is to celebrate loved ones,” it read. “Students have the special job of choosing a gift with their loved one in mind.” 

It is also aimed to provide comfort to students who may not have a mother in their lives, or live with two dads. 

According to Hunter Valley Grammar, the change was “based on feedback from families in the school community that it was upsetting some of the children from non-traditional families who have two dads or may not have a mum present in their lives.” 

However, some mothers at the school were hurt by the decision. 

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“I am quite upset by this,” a mum told The Daily Telegraph. 

“By changing the name, it feels like you are sending the message to students that Mums are no more important than anyone else in their lives they think are special.”

The mum said Mother’s Day is “the one day a year where mums are celebrated and recognised.”

Another mum accused the school of adopting a “woke ideology.” 

“As a concerned parent, I am deeply concerned about gender ideology infiltrating our schools,” she said. 

“And how proponents of this movement are not only seeking to erase important and meaningful gendered terms such as mother, girl, boy, breast, but also seek through the guise of ‘inclusion’ to erase valued traditions such as Mother’s Day.” 

To her, Mother’s Day is “the one day a year dedicated to all mums, future, past and present, to appreciate their value, sacrifices, and unconditional love.”

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Stall name change was  not intended to “diminish the significance of Mother’s Day”

Earlier this month, the NSW charity Rainbow Families issued guidelines suggesting that events such as Mother’s Day and Father’s Day should offer more inclusive language, therefore “avoiding gender stereotypes.”

“Not every child has a mum, some may have two dads, two mums or other diverse caregivers,” the guidelines read. 

In its place, Rainbow Families recommended gifting cards that read “You’re the Best!”

The suggestion aims to “allow children to celebrate any special adult in their life,” the charity explained.  

The private school’s move has been criticised by Rachael Wong, chief executive of the Women’s Forum Australia.

“[This is] one more example of a broader move to erase sex-specific language in our culture as part of an ideological push to reject biological reality and pretend that sex doesn’t matter,” she said. 

“And once again, it is women and mothers who are being erased in the name of this so-called ‘inclusiveness.’”

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In a statement to Kidspot, Hunter Valley Grammar School Principal Rebecca Butterworth said the school’s “intention in renaming the stall was to ensure that the children in our school who don’t have a mother in their home feel welcome and supported as they purchase an item from the stall. 

“It was never to diminish the significance of Mother’s Day or to disregard the important role our mothers, grandmothers, and all women play in our community as caregivers. We deeply value and respect all mothers and recognise their dedication to their families and our School community each and every day.

“In the lead-up to Mother’s Day our students have spent time talking about the important role mothers and caregivers play in their lives and thinking about ways to express their gratitude.”

Originally published as NSW school sparks outrage over ‘concerning’ changes to Mother’s Day event

Source: townsvillebulletin.com.au

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