“Queer” lessons do not require parental consent or notification in one Californian school district, according to public documents obtained by a parent group.
An “LGBTQ Family + Gender Diversity Elementary Teaching Guide” in the San Francisco Unified School District was revealed after a public records request was filed by Parents Defending Education, an organization fighting “indoctrination in the classroom” and promotes “the restoration of a healthy, non-political education.”
The guide mandates teachers use a students’ preferred pronouns along with other guidelines for educators tackling LGBTQ curriculum in class. Students 12 years and older can consent to “sensitive LGBTQ or sexual health-related services,” according to the guide’s “LGBTQ Student Rights” section.
“Teaching Queer and Trans Identity affirming lessons is mandated by SFUSD policy and the [California Department of Education] and does not require parental permission, nor does it require parental notification,” reads the guide. “A discussion about gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and questioning people does not constitute a discussion about human sexuality or family life education and does NOT require parent notification or permission according to the California Education Code.”
Parental notification is required when discussing puberty, sexually transmitted infections (STI) and HIV prevention, sexual health, or when an outside speaker is invited to the classroom. However, the guide denotes parental notification is not required when providing definitions to students, intervening in name calling incidents, teaching about LGBTQ family and gender diversity, covering books containing LGBTQ characters/plots/subplots, celebrating Pride month or speaking about LGBTQ persons in the curriculum outside of sexual health education.
A school district policy states that teaching "queer" lessons "does NOT require parental permission" or notification
— Chrissy Clark (@chrissyclark_) December 6, 2022
Educators are encouraged to explore “common terms” with students including cisgender, gender identity, gender expression, nonbinary, and transgender among others. Instructors are further encouraged to use “inclusive language” and avoid “gender specific words” unless the educator is “certain about a person’s family structure, identity or relationship orientation.”
“SFUSD follows the California Department of Education (CDE) mandate to inform all caregivers about planned instruction in comprehensive sexual health and HIV prevention education,” said one district spokeswoman in a statement to the Daily Caller. “The SFUSD Student & Family guide provides our annual notice to parents and families, including the right to opt out.”
“Our LGBTQ lessons and health education curriculum involves input from stakeholders including families, community members, staff, students, and more to ensure we are meeting the needs of students,” said another district spokeswoman when asked if parents could opt-out of LGBTQ curriculum for students.
“There is no subject that should be taught to elementary schoolers behind the backs of their parents but for a school district to explicitly state that they will teacher ‘queer and trans affirming lessons’ to other people’s young children and not notify parents is absolute madness,” said Parents Defending Education outreach director Erika Sanzi. “This is ideology — we don’t teach the catechism in public schools, with good reason, and we shouldn’t be teaching this either, no matter how many times school leaders repeat the word ‘inclusion.’ This isn’t inclusion; it’s dogma.”