heteronormalcy strikes again

I’d like to say this is the reason I refuse to take kids on some potentially fabulous tour of great American literature sites. But more likely I’m too lazy to try to keep track of more than just my own 2 year old.

But, I am incensed (as usual) by the continued practice of pairing same sex high school students together in accommodation pairs. A student approached me today with the same frustration about a trip he is taking to France with school and it has me fuming.

Let me be clear that I am in favor of same-sex education. I will continue to wrestle with the implications of perpetuating that gender binary, but as our society still maintains the otherness of women I will have to maintain my commitment to fulfilling the uniqueness of their educaitonal needs.

Heteronormative rooming practices ignore potential romantic feelings between same-sex partners, further marginalizing those feelings. The practice basically ignores same-sex attraction thus sending one more message that such attraction is not “normal.”

The trip is supposed to be about French culture and providing a limited immersion experience. Instead, it has this student focused on messages about sex and gender. This isn’t bad thing, since he’s clearly thinking critically about it… but what of the students and parents and tour guides that don’t know or want to think critically?

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