Open letter to ACC

To whom it may concern,

I have recently been made aware of the new teaching programme ?Mates and Dates? that is now being offered at secondary schools around our country. ?Mates and Dates? is backed and supported by you, the ACC.

Given that the following statement is the description of what constitutes fraud on the ACC website quote.

?If you suspect someone is misleading ACC, acting illegally, or if you see or hear something suspicious, tell us about it? end quote.

it seems appropriate to be contacting you regarding my concerns with the fraudulent content of this programme and the dishonest behaviour of those responsible for developing and delivering it.

Obviously, I can?t go so far as to say that the programme is illegal but it definitely qualifies as highly suspicious and whoever has been given the responsibility of developing this programme is certainly misleading ACC, and the young people in our schools who are participating in the programme.

Some of the content of the material is so at odds with the vast majority of peer-reviewed scientific literature it seems to me it cannot possibly be knowingly supported by your organisation.

Surely if you knew what the programme purports to teach you would have put a stop to it already.

I include just one example (from among many) of how programme material is completely at odds with current scientific literature. Quote

Gender is different from our physical or biological sex. It is the way that we understand ourselves as men or women or both or neither. We learn how to be and behave in gendered ways through expectations and ideas set out in society. end quote

From the Mates & Dates facilitators guide, Pg19, Year9:

This is patently absurd and absolutely wrong. How we learn to be and behave is highly influenced by our biology. Simple observation of our surroundings confirms this and to say otherwise is dangerous and smacks of Ideology and social engineering rather than science.

Something that is the case in well over 99% of all possible instances has to be highly determinant and to deny this cannot be scientifically honest or psychologically helpful. Just because a programme teaches otherwise it will not change this fact of our biology. More likely this attempt will only serve to increase the confusion of young people dealing with discovering who they are as individuals and trying to find their place in our society, adding to any difficulties or mental stress they may be experiencing.

By providing them with both inaccurate information and inadequate strategies for coping, the programme will probably achieve the exact opposite of what it claims it is trying to do and cause huge psychological damage to young people that in the end, ACC will need to fund!

Even a quick search on the internet makes available many studies that have looked into biological and societal influences on sex/gender, but very few have attempted to conclude that there is no biological basis to sex/gender at all, and very few that try to say the opposite either ? that biology is solely determinant. The vast bulk of research advocates quite rightly for the importance of understanding the influence of both.

Accepting only absolutist outliers as the foundation for any programme shows significant bias on the part of the programme developers. Most studies support the traditional idea that while biology is highly determinant in an individual?s personality traits etc., societal influences play a part in shaping these within certain ranges. Indeed, there is very little (if anything) about us that does not have an initial foundation in a person?s biology, which is then influenced to a greater or lesser degree by society. Studies into intelligence show the same sort of thing.

To ignore or deny the biological side of ourselves is not going to be helpful for anyone, especially those who are most vulnerable and in need of appropriate support!

After reviewing it, I have observed other inaccuracies and errors in the Mates and Dates material. My example is just one. That it is being presented as truth and fact by the facilitators when there is still little scientific consensus on these issues is why I now bring it to your attention as an instance of fraud that I believe needs investigating.

I look forward to your response about this and what you intend to do about it.

Yours sincerely
Simon Walmisley