As for parenting classes, though, in some cases, they can be extremely effective. As a social worker, I've taught parenting classes-some classes that were particularly aimed at fathers, although none of them were court-mandated. I've had people tell me that they got some good tips and ideas from my classes. I think a lot of it depends on the frame of mind in which a person enters classes.If the classes were just teaching objective facts or scientific wisdom, then it wouldn't matter if the teacher was gay or a non-parent.
It's a shame that many of those doing court work are not experienced parents themselves, although I really don't think being gay makes a difference, as long as he's a parent. As a parent, I really think it could make a difference.
The parenting classes used by my local court are not designed to impart any factual knowledge. They are more like Soviet-style re-education camps. The class instructor is supposed to draw everyone into a discussion and report back to the court on who has the proper attitudes. If you don't show sufficient remorse or whatever the instructor is looking for, then you get a bad report to the court.
If you got sent to parenting class for spanking, then you would be at the mercy of some social worker's opinion about whether you have learned your lesson.
I do not believe the promises that a first-time spanking offender will only get parenting classes. That would probably only be true if you admitted your guilt. If you declared your innocence or objected to the law, then the judge would stick it to you any way he could.