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Asian, Latino families take on sex education in California schools

In somewhat of a politically correct conundrum out in California (which perhaps could be solved with a Politically Correct Hierarchy Handbook), parents from immigrant communities are leading the charge against the state’s new sex education curriculum.

Joanne Jacobs reports that over the last two years, the Asian community in the northern California Cupertino Union School District has battled against the “Teen Talk Middle School” program. This included a Change.org petition which claimed the program’s lessons contained “detailed, graphic descriptions of oral, anal and vaginal sex,” which are “neither age- nor culturally appropriate.”

The school board ended up reversing course and ditched the program.

One Chinese-American parent (who feared workplace retaliation) said “Asian people care about family values; we don’t appreciate kids being sexually active too early.” Just imagine if she was a white Evangelical Christian!

Other districts which faced challenges include Palo Alto United and Fremont United, according to Jacobs. The College Fix reported the Chino Valley district also dealt with angry parents.

Further south, it is Latino families leading the way. In the Santa Ana district, Latino immigrant families complained the sex ed curriculum was being “shoved down their throats” and that no Spanish version of the program had been made available to them, in violation of California law.

Some parents complained that they were purposefully being left in the dark because the school board and state education department knew that this particular community would absolutely not approve of the more graphic elements, nor the unmonitored discussion of issues related to sexuality and gender identity. As one mother put it, “How can a state that claims to be so much for the rights of immigrants and minorities then ignore our concerns on purpose? They are hypocrites!”

Other parents voiced concerns about their parental rights being stripped away. One mother said she only learned about the school’s “LGBT Fair” after it had happened. She was shocked to learn that a local drag performer had been offering make-up application lessons to the students during the fair and did not feel it was appropriate for any school-approved activity to include make-up lessons for 11-14 year-olds regardless of LGBT issues. She had not even been given the opportunity to opt her child out of such a thing.

The Sacramento Bee reports this past Thursday some 200 people gathered at the state Capitol to protest the California State Board of Education’s Health Education Framework. Jacobs points out the Framework is available only in English and “introduces terms many parents haven’t heard and won’t find in the dictionary.” For instance, chapter 3 recommends the book “Who Are You?” for pre-K through third grade which introduces the terms “trans, genderqueer, non-binary, gender fluid, transgender, gender neutral, agender, neutrois, bigender, third gender, [and] two spirit.”

“‘Neutrois’ is new to me,” Jacobs says. It means “a non-binary gender identity that falls under the genderqueer or transgender umbrellas.”

Read the Joanne Jacobs piece and Bee article.

MORE: School won’t say what’s in its ‘LGBTQ Sex Education’ workshop

MORE: Students can earn credit for attending ‘Queer Sex Ed Workshop’

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About the Author
Associate Editor
Dave has been writing about education, politics, and entertainment for over 18 years, including a stint at the popular media bias site Newsbusters. He is a retired educator with over 25 years of service and is a member of the National Association of Scholars. Dave holds undergraduate and graduate degrees from the University of Delaware.