French government retreats on teaching boy-girl equality in schools after parent protests

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PARIS - France is replacing its plan to teach children the "ABCD of equality" between boys and girls after protests by some parents who feared it was a stealth effort to erase gender differences.

The Education Ministry on Monday said it would replace the plan with new training for teachers when the new school year begins in September. From then, teachers will be able to decide how to broach the topic, especially with the youngest students in preschool.

The initial plan was essentially an experiment with 275 schools, and it came under protest from Roman Catholic leaders, the French far right, and some parents groups.

France's Minister for Women's Rights, Najat Vallaud-Belkacem, told France 3 television the new plan would include all schools and would be an "improved" version.

Organizations: Education Ministry, France 3

Geographic location: France

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