According to sex education guidelines released by a coalition of liberal health and education groups this week, young elementary school students should use the proper names for body parts and, by the end of fifth grade, know that sexual orientation is “the romantic attraction of an individual to someone of the same gender or a difference gender.”
One reason for the recommendations is that despite awareness of bullying, reports the Washington Post, some schools don’t address it, especially in relation to sexual orientation or gender identity. In other words, general instruction against any bullying is not enough, and that certain types of bullying are worse and deserve specific attention. This is an agenda.
Among the standards is that young elementary school children should be able to identify difference kinds of family structure (i.e. Joey has two mommies, or Tina’s father used to be a woman) and explain why bullying and teasing are wrong. For middle schoolers, the coalition recommends that they be able to differentiate between gender identity, gender expression and sexual orientation.
By the time a student leaves 8th grade, which is between 12 and 14 years old, they should “be able to evaluate the effectiveness of abstinence, condoms and other ‘safer sex methods’ and know how emergency contraception works. While the recommendations are non-binding, the coalition is actively promoting them to states and school districts.
Valerie Huber, executive director of the National Education Abstinence Association, said she does not agree with the topics and goals of the standards. Like the anti-smoking campaign of the last few decades that has had success, abstinence should be the focus of such programs, she said.
“This should be a program about health, rather than agendas that have nothing to do with optimal sexual health decision-making,” Huber said. “Controversial topics are best reserved for conversations between parent and child, not in the classroom.”
Source: Washington Post
“Gender inclusive” practices for preschoolers? DESE held a training for school officials that parents should know about.
If you have a child in the public school system in MA and you don’t receive the MA Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE)