A SAME-SEX couple have slammed a headteacher who they say told them his school teaches that relationships should be between a man and woman – however, he says this was a misunderstanding.

Rebekah Shields and Claire Morgan say they were shocked and upset after the alleged comments were made in front of their child during a visit to see whether the River School in Worcester was suitable for their 11-year-old daughter.

But the headteacher, Adrian Parsonage, has called it “a misunderstanding” and stressed that children with same-sex parents are welcome at the school.

Miss Shields said the couple, who are engaged and live in Droitwich, visited a number of schools and asked each one whether they had any other same-sex parents.

Miss Shields, 35, said: “He replied no. Mr Parsonage proceeded to tell us that he would speak to other teachers about ‘the problem’, to which we replied ‘there is no problem.’ He went on to say how the school expects parents and students to respect their ethos, and how they believe that ‘relationships should be between a man and a woman.’

"He said they were his views, and how the children are taught. I was dumbfounded. This was all said in front of my child who has had to gain their own confidence at school with having two mums.

“I had to leave without saying any more due to the fact that I didn’t wish to embarrass my child, and told Mr Parsonage the school wouldn’t be for us.”

But Mr Parsonage denied describing the family as ‘a problem.’

He told the Worcester News: “There would appear to be some significant and most unfortunate misunderstandings that took place in the meeting. The school did not describe, has never described and will not describe a child with same-sex parents, or the admission of such a child into the school, as a ‘problem.’

“We do not discriminate against families with differing values or beliefs. For the avoidance of doubt: admission is open to children with same-sex parents. The River School has a Christian foundation, is designated as a school of religious character and has a legal duty to teach in line with its Christian principles - like all faith schools. The River School teaches about ethical, social and moral issues from this standpoint while respecting the freedom of pupils to discuss and debate such matters.”

The couple say they tried to make an official complaint to the school about discrimination on the grounds of their sexual orientation, but have heard nothing back.

Miss Morgan, 47, said: “We were both in shock, I worry for other children and parents.”