NewsFri Jan 5, 2007 - 12:15 pm EST
Montgomery County Parents Ready to Take on Homosexual Middle School Curriculum Again
By Hilary White
ROCKVILLE, January 5, 2007 (LifeSiteNews.com) – The Board of Education of Montgomery County, Maryland, is set next week to consider a new curriculum for middle and high school students on sex education. The new program is being put forward after a group of parents had objected that a previously developed curriculum was too one-sided on homosexuality and denigrated religious beliefs that homosexual activity is a sin.
Although the material, vetted by a committee made up of both sides in the legal case, adopted 69 of 83 recommended changes, the parents’ organization, Citizens for a Responsible Curriculum (CRC), warns parents that much of its content is still objectionable.
The new program is the result of the efforts of a group of parents who obtained a court-ordered delay on the implementation of the previous material. In November 2004, the Montgomery Board had approved a “new approach” to teaching students about homosexuality that included a video, meant for 8th graders, giving instruction in how to use condoms. After parents won a delay in the courts, the Board agreed to revisit its material.
The latest curriculum continues to offer instruction that accepts the homosexual lifestyle as normal and offers 10th graders lessons in using condoms. It encourages students to label their “sexual orientation” saying, “Most people who are gay, lesbian, or bi-sexual report feeling ‘different’ at a young age even though they might not have had a name for that feeling,” and, “People can identify themselves as gay, lesbian, bi-sexual, or transgender at any point in their lives.”
The CRC says the new curriculum “proactively” promotes the homosexual and “transgender” disorders as normal and common. The group says that the material contains “no mention of the increased risk of sexually transmitted disease inherent in homosexual sex. Health risks are minimized and only attached to the stress of ‘coming out’.”
The original 2004 curriculum was developed with assistance from the Washington area chapter of the activist organization, Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG), a group that advocates for the full inclusion of the homosexual political agenda in schools and other public institutions.
Opponents of the previous curriculum, including the organization, Parents and Friends of Ex-Gays, were concerned that it promoted sexual activity in teenagers, failed to include information on the well-documented medical dangers of homosexual activity and gave no time to the possibility that a homosexual “orientation” could be changed.
In May 2005, U.S. District Judge Alexander Williams Jr., issued a decision that put the implementation of the program on a ten-day hold. The judge said that though he did not believe the curriculum would directly result in school children engaging in sexual activity, he was concerned that the program singled out certain Christian churches and gave a “one-sided” view of homosexuality.
“The Revised Curriculum presents only one view on the subject - that homosexuality is a natural and morally correct lifestyle - to the exclusion of other perspectives.” Williams said.
Later that month, the Board voted to scrap the curriculum and the committee that created it and start again. In June 2005, the Board agreed to drop specific mention of religious beliefs in the curriculum.
When the Board announced it would be dissolving the committee and redesigning its curriculum, Melissa Pardue, social welfare policy analyst at the Heritage Foundation said the case, “is the first time we’ve seen national attention to parental concern, but I think this is happening all over the place.”
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Maryland Judge Halts Sex-Ed Curriculum