French schools battle boycott after hoax text messages warn of 'masturbation classes'

Almost half the pupils from some French primary schools were absent from class after the text messages were sent

French schools are battling a boycott after hoax text messages were sent to parents warning that teachers were introducing “gender theory” classes and planned to teach children as young as four how to masturbate.

Almost half the pupils from some French primary schools were absent from class after the text messages, which were allegedly sent by 'Equality and Reconciliation', an association with links to the far-Right, were widely circulated.

The group claims the campaign, which is thought to be connected to acquaintances of the far-right essayist Alain Soral - famous for his anti-feminist and anti-gay marriage views, was created to “protect children's intimacy and integrity”.

According to The Local, quoting reports in the French daily Libération, last week parents were sent text messages warning them to keep their children at home on Friday or Monday as a protest against the schools teaching gender theory, sex education and masturbation.

Another report from French news outlet Est Republicain claimed a text message read: “Sex education will be provided in nursery schools in September 2014, with demonstrations.” According to the reports another read: “Now they are talking about teaching children aged four, how to masturbate.”

“The state is going to teach our children that they were not born a boy or a girl like God wanted, but they are whatever they choose to become. With gay and lesbian speakers who will fill their heads with monstrous ideas,” read part of another text.

The call to boycott classes was mostly responded to by Muslim parents The Telegraph reported stating that in areas with large immigrant populations up to 40 per cent of pupils stayed away.

Anti-gay marriage campaigners appear to have latched onto a government initiative called the “ABCD of equality in school”.

The Local reports that campaigner Farida Belghoul, who is allegedly behind some of the protests, has suggested that the initiative, which aims to teach equality and respect, has a hidden ideological agenda.

The origin of the masturbation class rumours would appear also to be right-wing websites.

They suggest that the French government has adopted a World Health Organisation report that they spuriously claim encourages child masturbation.

The recommendations of the report, which was published in 2010, have no legislative power in France regardless.

The French Ministry of Education told Est Republicain that the rumours were 'unfounded and slanderous' and that the ABCD of equality was aimed at promoting equality and diversity in schools.

“Parents should have no fear about putting their children into public school,” a spokesman said.

News
people
Arts and Entertainment
Lena Dunham
booksLena Dunham's memoirs - written at the age of 28 - are honest to the point of making you squirm
Arts and Entertainment
A bit rich: Maggie Smith in Downton Abbey
tvDownton Abbey review: It's six months since we last caught up with the Crawley clan
Sport
Frank Lampard and his non-celebration
premier leagueManchester City vs Chelsea match report from the Etihad Stadium
PROMOTED VIDEO
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
Life and Style
A new app has been launched that enables people to have a cuddle from a stranger
techNew app offers 'PG alternative' to dating services like Tinder
News
Jacqueline Bisset has claimed that young women today are obsessed with being 'hot', rather than 'charming', 'romantic' or 'beautiful'
people
Arts and Entertainment
Jake Quickenden sings his heart out in his second audition
tvX Factor: How did the Jakes - and Charlie Martinez - fare?
Sport
premier league
Arts and Entertainment
'New Tricks' star Dennis Waterman is departing from the show after he completes filming on two more episodes
tvOnly remaining original cast-member to leave crime series
Sport
Mario Balotelli celebrates his first Liverpool goal
premier leagueLiverpool striker expressed his opinion about the 5-3 thriller with Leicester - then this happened
News
Britain's shadow chancellor Ed Balls (L) challenges reporter Rob Merrick for the ball during the Labour Party versus the media soccer match,
peopleReporter left bleeding after tackle from shadow Chancellor in annual political football match
Arts and Entertainment
Female fans want more explicit male sex in Game of Thrones, George R R Martin says
tvSpoiler warning: Star of George RR Martin's hit series says viewers have 'not seen the last' of him/her
News
i100
News
i100
Sport
Plenty to ponder: Amir Khan has had repeated problems with US immigration because of his Muslim faith and now American television may shun him
boxing
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Head of Marketing and Communications - London - up to £80,000

£70000 - £80000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Group Head of Marketing and Communic...

Nursery Nurse

Negotiable: Randstad Education Manchester: Level 3 Nursery Nurse required for ...

Nursery Nurse

Negotiable: Randstad Education Manchester: L3 Nursery Nurses urgently required...

SEN Teaching Assistant

Negotiable: Randstad Education Manchester: We have a number of schools based S...

Day In a Page

A roller-coaster tale from the 'voice of a generation'

Not That Kind of Girl:

A roller-coaster tale from 'voice of a generation' Lena Dunham
London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice. In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence

London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice

In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence
Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with Malcolm McLaren

Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with McLaren

Designer 'felt pressured' into going out with Sex Pistols manager
Jourdan Dunn: Model mother

Model mother

Jordan Dunn became one of the best-paid models in the world
Apple still coolest brand – despite U2 PR disaster

Apple still the coolest brand

Despite PR disaster of free U2 album
Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum
Manolo Blahnik: The high priest of heels talks flats, Englishness, and why he loves Mary Beard

Manolo Blahnik: Flats, Englishness, and Mary Beard

The shoe designer who has been dubbed 'the patron saint of the stiletto'
The Beatles biographer reveals exclusive original manuscripts of some of the best pop songs ever written

Scrambled eggs and LSD

Behind The Beatles' lyrics - thanks to Hunter Davis's original manuscript copies
'Normcore' fashion: Blending in is the new standing out in latest catwalk non-trend

'Normcore': Blending in is the new standing out

Just when fashion was in grave danger of running out of trends, it only went and invented the non-trend. Rebecca Gonsalves investigates
Dance’s new leading ladies fight back: How female vocalists are now writing their own hits

New leading ladies of dance fight back

How female vocalists are now writing their own hits
Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments