US

California Approves New Sex Education Guidelines for Teachers in Face of Protests

By Samuel Allegri

The California Department of Education approved of some controversial modifications to the state’s health and sex education guidelines for public schools on May 8. that encourage discussions about gender identity and LGBTQ relationships but took off five sources and books that were “sexually explicit,” and “offensive, reckless and immoral.” One of these books explains sex to students as young as kindergarten, reported the Sacramento Bee.

Regardless of large protests, the Department of Education unanimously approved the new framework for elementary school grades related to sex trafficking, sexual orientation, and how to support transgender and “nonconforming” students in the classroom.

More than 120 people registered for public comment to support or oppose the new guidelines.

Before the meeting, almost 200 people rallied to protest at Capitol Park.

Stephanie Yates, founder of Informed Parents of California said, “How are they helping kids find themselves when they are confusing them about who they are, or they could possibly be nothing at all.”

Informed Parents of California has grown to more than 20,000 members since its foundation last year.

Yates condemned the Department of Education board in the meeting, and as she called the new framework part of a political agenda, and it’s material pornography, dozens of people in the lobby cheered at the speech being transmitted through a live feed.

“Changing You,” the title of one of the books that was stricken from the list of recommended titles, shows cartoon images of male and female sexual organs. It also talks about what “having sex is.” The book had been proposed for transitional kindergarten up to third grade.

The director of California Family Council, Greg Burt, said, “There are all kinds of alternatives, but they want to teach sex ed with the guise that they were trying to prevent sexual transmitted diseases and prevent teen pregnancy, now we are teaching kids how to have a robust sex life. Not everything under the sun needs to be taught to our kids, with no moral judgment.”

The implementation of the framework is not mandatory for the schools, it’s a recommendation for teachers and administrators, and students are permitted to opt-out from lessons about sexual health. However, the state said that students can’t be absent from lessons that cover gender identity, discrimination, and social issues such as the Supreme Court ruling on same-sex marriage.

Feliza I. Ortiz-Licon, member of the Board of Education told The Associated Press, “It’s important to know the board is not trying to ban books. We’re not saying that the books are bad. But the removal will help avoid the misunderstanding that California is mandating the use of these books.”

An earlier draft of the framework also suggested a book that included immoral and deviant sexual activity.

The finalized framework informs teachers that students in kindergarten can identify themselves as transgender and offers suggestions for explaining, saying, “The goal is not to cause confusion about the gender of the child but to develop an awareness that other expressions exist,” reported Fox News.

The guideline also gives advice for a discussion on puberty with transgender teens, claiming it would create, “an environment that is inclusive and challenges binary concepts about gender.”