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Father Opens Up About Gay Son In Emotional Call About Primary School Sex Education
24 February 2019, 09:50 | Updated: 24 February 2019, 11:58
A father opened up about his relationship with his son in a heart-warming call after the Department for Education announced new primary school classes on gay and trans relationships.
Mark told Andrew Castle that he was born in a religious family where his dad was "vehemently opposed" to homosexuality, and that he even went out to 'beat up' gap people because he believed he was "doing God a favour".
But his belief was challenged after being called into his sons school for a conversation with teachers.
"For the past ten years of being a single parent to my son, I've deliberately not said things in front of him but clearly I have said things that he's heard," he said.
"I got a call from the school when my son was 15 asking if I could come in," he said.
"A couple of teachers sat there and brought my son in and said he wanted to say something to me.
"And my son looked absolutely petrified, told me that he thought he was gay, and then apologised.
"I was gobsmacked and shocked that my son was so scared of me.
"I thought I had done a fantastic job at being a father to him but clearly I hadn't because I hadn't taught him that it was okay to be who he was, whoever he was."
His comments come as the Department for Education reveals new classes for children to help them understand gay and trans relationships.
Following a six-month consultation, schools will begin teaching the new classes from September 2020 with primary pupils learning about same-sex and trans families as well as staying safe online and developing "healthy, respectful relationships".
Secondary school pupils will also see changes to their classes on relationships and sex, including education on female genital mutilation (FGM), risks associated with sexting, online grooming, domestic violence and forced marriage.
Listen to the remarkable story in the video above.