Will Knowland Wiki – Will Knowland Biography
The Eton College teacher, who was dismissed amidst the freedom of expression debate, lost his objection today.
The governing body of Berkshire college, at £ 42,500 a year, approved the school principals’ decision to fire Will Knowland.
The English teacher was dismissed for an online conference on radical feminism and the concept of ‘toxic masculinity’.
His dismissal as he reportedly refused to remove his lecture from his personal YouTube channel sparked outrage among students who promptly filed a petition for Mr. Knowland’s reinstatement.
It also brought the private school, which is currently closed due to the Covid-19 outbreak, into controversy because of the so-called ‘awakened’ values of current principal Simon Henderson.
However, the school governing body approved the decision to dismiss Mr. Knowland after Prince William and Harry’s appeal hearing chaired by the former home master.
Today, Mr Henderson told staff in an email seen by MailOnline that he ‘regretted’ Mr Knowland’s employment ‘ended in this way’ and urged the staff to ‘maintain positive dialogue among those with opposing views’.
Meanwhile, the Union for Freedom of Expression called the decision ‘betrayal’ to school history and promised to take the war to Parliament.
Eton College was temporarily closed due to a coronavirus outbreak between students and teachers.
At £ 42,500 a year, school principal Simon Henderson wrote a letter to parents saying that ‘a number of symptomatic men and staff had been tested positive’ for the virus.
Mr Henderson said in a letter seen by MailOnline that there is a ‘real danger’ that the number could get out of control this weekend if action is not taken.
It did not indicate how many students tested positive at a boarding school housing boys aged 13 to 18 years.
Students will continue to learn remotely until the end of the semester.
A letter sent last week said: A number of symptomatic men and staff who have largely been away from Covid since ‘Long Leave’ have tested positive in the past few days. We await results for a few other results, with more tests planned.
‘We also now have a significant number of boys and staff who isolate themselves as close contacts.’
He said it was clear that he had ‘Covid in school’.
‘We believe there is a real danger that after seeking medical advice, if we do not take action, the number of cases will increase significantly over the weekend and over the next week.
“The health and well-being of the school community is my top priority.”
The union said in a statement: ‘The Free Speech Alliance was disappointed to learn that Eton supports the decision to dismiss our board member Will Knowland.
‘No teacher should lose their job for defying ideological orthodoxy, at least a teacher at Eton.
This is a betrayal of the school’s 580-year history that encourages students to think critically and independently about difficult questions.
“The Freedom of Expression Association will refer Eton’s trustees to the Aid Commission and the Attorney General for not fulfilling their duty of protecting Eton’s reputation and pursuing the charitable cause of advancing education for the benefit of its students.
‘Also, the Free Expression League will work with its supporters in the House of Commons to amend the 2010 Equality Act.’
The debate began after Mr. Knowland published an online conference called ‘The Patriarchal Paradox’ that questioned radical feminists and praised men’s historical and social influence.
The lesson not shown to students was prepared as part of the school’s Perspective Classrooms for older students to consider different perspectives.
After concerns about its content were raised, permission to show it directly to students was denied, which later turned out to contain false statistics on rape.
Mr. Knowland responded by posting the video on his personal YouTube site and was fired after repeatedly refusing to remove the video.
It has since enjoyed widespread support from current and former students, and many have written directly to the school to protest and criticize the school’s pursuit of an ‘awakened’ agenda that mutes opposing views.
Last week it turned out that Eton theology teacher, Dr Luke Martin, left his post as head of the Perspectives classes, in a movement that was seen as a support movement for Mr. Knowland.
Still in school, Dr. Martin accused the head teacher, Mr. Henderson, of presiding over an atmosphere where deviations from traditional thinking could lead to ridicule or ‘official discipline’.
Assistant attorney Dr. His letter of complaint to Gailey warned that students were being forced to adopt a “supposedly progressive” ideology that seemed “inclusive, tolerant and kind” but similar to “religious fundamentalism.”
An online petition calling for Mr Knowland to be reinstated has also been signed by more than 2,700 current and former pupils as well as other supporters.
One old boy said on the online petition: ‘I regard political correctness and wokeness as an evil which is making a mockery of free speech and attempting to turn the history of this great Country upside down.
‘No respectable educational establishment should have any truck with it, and should resist firmly.’
Another said: ‘I am an Old Etonian from many years back and I remember the free intellectual atmosphere in those days, which sadly seems to have evaporated to the great detriment of the school.’
However other criticised the lecture, in which Mr Knowland appeared to argue sex attacks were overstated by feminists for political reasons, saying ‘rape, is not a unique claim for male oppression of women because male-on-male rape in jails dwarfs male-on-female rapes outside them’.
When challenged on his comment in remarks beneath the video, he stated ‘that the only serious scientific studies ever done on the subject estimate that … 40-60 per cent of rape accusations are false’.
Most experts believe that the proportion of false rape allegations in the UK is no more than 3 to 4 per cent. The FBI puts the level of unfounded reports in the US at 8 per cent.
Sarah Green, director of the End Violence Against Women Coalition, said Mr Knowland was guilty of ‘extremely selective and incorrect use of rape statistics’.
Mr Henderson meanwhile has defended the sacking in an email to staff and parents at the college.
In the email, seen by MailOnline, he said: ‘I regret that Will’s employment has ended in this way.’
Defending the college, he added: ‘It has been suggested by some that intellectual freedom is somehow being compromised within Eton. It is not.
‘This is such a rewarding place to work precisely because there is such plurality of thought among boys and staff.
‘However, as in any school, there are limits to the freedoms that teachers have and there are professional obligations that must be respected.’
A fundraising appeal set up by Mr Knowland to help pay his legal fees at an employment tribunal, has so far raised more than £59,000 from 1,110 donors in the 11 days since his case became public.
The £60,000 target of the appeal on donorbox.org was recently raised to £100,000 to reflect the growing support he is receiving from many Old Etonians.
Mr Knowland makes no mention of Eton on the fund-raising page, but states he and his family face losing th
He says on the page: ‘I have been dismissed from my employment. My wife and I will be made homeless, along with our five children.
‘I am raising money to challenge my dismissal in the Employment Tribunal if necessary.’