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Response to Misstatements in the Spokesman Review

Buckle up friends. As we get closer to November these type of articles will increase. Here's our response to the misstatements. Help us get the truth out there!

The Spokesman Review has joined the Comprehensive Sex Education (CSE) misinformation campaign following in supporters’ footsteps by providing information they want the public to have while ignoring inconvenient facts.

While most parents want sex education for their children, they don’t want CSE, and they are not synonymous. According to the framework of The International Planned Parenthood Foundation (IPPF), who authored at least one curriculum on OSPI’s list, “Our approach includes an emphasis on sexual expression, sexual fulfillment and pleasure. This represents a shift away from methodologies that focus exclusively on the reproductive aspects of adolescent sexuality.”

OSPI’s Sexual Health Education Program Supervisor, Laurie Dils, stated that the optimal future of sex ed would be CSE that begins in kindergarten, is provided every year, and includes intensive instruction over a matter of weeks, if not the full year, weaving it into all sorts of content areas. While districts are not required to teach CSE to kindergartners, they can. The 3 Rs, the only K-3 curriculum on OSPI’s list, tells 5-year-olds about a “very sensitive area called the clitoris” and also gives teachers discretion to teach them about the sex act.

The controversial book on the 4th grade book list is still part of the curriculum. OSPI could have included instructions to remove that page when they updated their list in May, but they chose not to.

Your claim that districts are not allowed to include sex-ed in other subjects is false. The bill stated it wasn’t the legislature’s intent to require sex-ed be taught in other subjects, but it wasn’t prohibited either. In fact, an amendment that would have prevented it was rejected. The FLASH curriculum includes suggestions at the end of most lessons for integrating the information into other subjects.

Yes, districts can choose which of the curricula on OSPI’s list they want to use, but it’s a hollow choice. The term, “pick your poison” has never been more apt. Do you want the curriculum that calls your daughter a “person with a uterus and ovaries” or the one that will refer to her as “a person with a vulva?” And sure, they can create their own curriculum but it will STILL have to conform with OSPI’s CSE standards and be paid for at the district’s expense because SB 5395 was an unfunded mandate. One district estimated that cost to be $232,000.

And can we dispense with the notion that OSPI doesn’t “approve” curricula? What exactly do you call it when they issue a requirement to choose a curriculum on their reviewed list or one nearly identical? No other subject in the state is held to this standard.

Why have news organizations refused to print examples from the curricula? The 3 Rs (the only K-12 curriculum on OSPI’s list) and IPPF’s It’s All One are free and available online. FLASH and other curricula samples are online. Why not share the FLASH birth control lessons that provide no failure rates or risks; the 3 Rs 7th grade lesson that tells kids bathing together and mutual masturbation are good ways for building a connection while avoiding STDs; the numerous role-playing exercises where one student tries to get another to consent to sex; the step-by-step description of an orgasm that’s read to students; the sexting lesson that concludes by telling kids sexting is “just another aspect of normal sexual behavior” or the porn lesson that fails to disclose any of the harms of porn (another amendment that was rejected).

Instead of repeating the tired claims that the curricula are age appropriate and medically accurate, share actual examples and let parents make a fully informed decision on whether they want their children to receive this type of instruction.

(To see the article from the spokesman)

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