His LGBTQ-inclusive lessons have been targeted by angry parents.
Andrew Moffat, the assistant headteacher at the Parkfield Community School, has been shortlisted for the Global Teacher Prize. Moffat is the only teacher from the UK to have made it onto this year’s list.
Moffat teaches children in workshops called No Outsiders, which focuses on issues like inclusivity and diversity. Speaking about his work, he said: “A big challenge for us is to teach our children that there are different people out there.
“This is a resource that helps school and gives schools a framework through which to teach children that we are all different but actually that’s fantastic.”
However, Moffat’s lessons haven’t received a great reception from parents, some of whom have taken to protesting the classes. Addressing this on Good Morning Britian, Moffat said: “I understand that some communities have tensions with the LGBT+ aspect but we’ve got to work our way through this, because in the UK there are gay people and that’s OK, that’s good.
“We have to work together, we’ve got to get through this together and we will get through this together, we’ll find a way.”
Describing Moffat in its nomination, the Varkey Foundation, who host the award, said: “Andrew has extended this ethos to parents through the use of parent/child workshops and he has extended the programme, with schools taking forward ‘No Outsiders’ in many cities across the UK.
“[He] now also uses ‘No Outsiders’ as a tool to reduce the potential for radicalization.
“Andrew also runs a ‘Parkfield Ambassadors’ after-school club that creates opportunities for children at his school where 99% of students are Muslim to meet others of different races, religions and cultures around Birmingham.”
Moffat received congratulations from the Education Secretary, Damian Hinds, who said in a statement: “I wish him the best of luck for the final. This is also another appropriate moment to thank all our teachers for their dedication and exceptional work, day after day, for our children and our society, in their unique role.”
The winner of the award gets a cash prize of £770,000, the winner will be announced in a ceremony held in Dubai in March.