Aberdeen School Council conducted a survey asking students aged 7 to determine if they were non-binary or transgender.
These students were in P5 and 6 in the Scottish school system. This refers to the education levels/grades of the country. For older grades, the system moves from P1 through P7 to then S1 and S6.
The survey did not require that the children be accompanied by a parent or guardian. The school system also did not seek parental permission for the children to answer the questions.
Of the 32 seats on the Aberdeen city council, 32 are by controlled the Scottish National Party and the Scottish Labour Party. The SNP, which controls 15, is a separatist party that seeks to leave the United Kingdom and rejoin the European Union. The Labour Party, with 17 seats, is a “democratic socialist” party.
Aberdeen council spokesperson made it clear in a statement that children have the right to opt-out.
“All children aged 5 to 6 years old were offered the chance to take part in a survey on their physical well-being. As with all surveys, young people can opt out before or during the activity.
The spokesperson for the survey said that questions had been carefully considered and were “deemed appropriate” after a thorough review.
These questions were developed by a team of education support officers and then reviewed by parents, teachers, and pupils before being used last year. According to the statement, “the questions in the survey are closely linked to the health- and wellbeing curriculum starting at P4 (2nd level).”
This survey was also justified by the claim that there are “large numbers” of transgender and non-binary students in the school district.
It continues, “The survey has very few identifiers but it does include gender and age to help us identify the appropriate supports.”
“It’s been established that many young people identify themselves as transgender/non-binary through work in schools. We wanted to make sure that they had an open forum for their responses,” said the spokesperson.
According to the Scottish federal government, it was not involved in the survey.