Academy under attack for LGBT support

A head teacher whose school won an award for the support given to its LGBT pupils has been on the receiving end of an online attack.

Ultra-conservative website Catholic Truth saw coverage of Cumbernauld Academy’s victory in the recent LGBT Youth Scotland Award - which we featured last month.

The website’s editor then took the step of writing to head teacher Mark Cairns and printed the letter in full online for its readers - claiming that pupils were being brainwashed on campus.

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It went on to say: “Given the fact that “safe spaces” are being provided in Catholic schools for LGBT pupils afraid of bullying because of their “orientation”, would you let me know if you are providing “safe spaces” for Catholic pupils and, indeed, others who may find themselves bullied for having reservations about or not approving of same-sex partnerships?

“And would you please also advise which materials are in use to explain the specific health risks of homosexual activity?”

The editor then provided a link to a site which supposedly outlines these and asked Mr Cairn to respond.

A council spokesperson insisted Mr Cairns had not read the letter and did not wish to comment further.

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However a spokesperson from LGBT Scotland said: “Research is showing that 71 per cent of LGBT young people experiencing bullying on the ground of being LGBT and nine per cent LGBT leaving education as result.

“We are not aware of research which shows that a high number of people who do not agree with same-sex relationships are being bullied within schools. Indeed it is wrong to assume that Catholic pupils are not supportive of same-sex relationships.

“The rest of the letter implies that by taking steps to be LGBT inclusive schools will encourage people to be LGBT. Sexual orientation and transgender identity is an intrinsic part of people’s identities and lives. No one can encourage it or promote it.”