Hwa Chong counsellor who delivered anti-LGBTQ content suspended from all duties

Hwa Chong has been watching out for students who may have been affected by the counsellor's presentation. ZAOBAO FILE PHOTO

SINGAPORE - The Hwa Chong Institution (HCI) counsellor who made a presentation containing discriminatory content has been suspended from all duties pending further investigation by the school board.

The school has been watching out for students who may be affected after the HCI employee had included content discriminating against lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) people in his presentation to the school's Secondary 4 cohort on July 13.

Teachers have been vigilant in monitoring their students' well-being, and students who have concerns or require support have been encouraged to approach school leaders or a trusted adult in school, said Education Minister Chan Chun Sing in a written reply to questions in Parliament on Tuesday (Aug 2).

The counsellor had earlier been suspended from conducting sexuality education lessons after the incident, with HCI saying the presentation content was not approved by the school.

Non-Constituency MP Hazel Poa had asked what duties the counsellor is continuing and whether safeguards will be put in place against a recurrence of the incident.

Mr Xie Yao Quan (Jurong GRC) had asked if the Ministry of Education (MOE) is aware of any student seeking help, and when MOE expects to complete any investigations into the incident.

According to images of the presentation that were shared on social media, the presentation slides contained unsubstantiated claims such as how a majority of homosexuals have problems with intestinal worms and how a high proportion of them are paedophiles.

The slides also associated homosexuality with problems such as alcoholism and sexual assault.

Mr Chan said parents and students have been given the assurance that the views expressed by the counsellor do not reflect those of HCI.

He added: "The school has also emphasised the importance of respect and care for everyone in the school community."

The school is reviewing its processes to ensure alignment with MOE's curriculum and guidelines, he said.

Remote video URL

Join ST's Telegram channel and get the latest breaking news delivered to you.