A growing “sit-out” movement is currently underway in California for the purpose of protesting the state’s AB-327 education bill. The 2016 California Healthy Youth Act, AB-329, has been established into law as Education Code 51930-51939.
First introduced in 2016, the bill was amended to include numerous controversial subjects in sex education classes for students in California schools. The revised curriculum includes topics such as transgender and LGBT lifestyles, birth control, abortion, bullying and abuse, and sexual orientation. According to our private tutors in Orange County, the curriculum also goes into detail about different types of sexual activity that some might consider graphic.
In February, California parents began what they referred to as a “Sex Education Sit Out,” calling the curriculum “age-inappropriate, pornographic, medically inaccurate and highly biased.”
Informed Parents of California, a grassroots organization, wrote an open letter to Department of Education officials, lawmakers and principals, in which they vehemently opposed the curriculum and materials that will be used to teach sex education classes.
The letter stated, among other things, that students will be taught negotiation skills for sex, as well as potentially be instructed to go behind their parents backs to engage in life altering or medically risky treatments or procedures. The latter include obtaining puberty blockers for gender transition, which the group asserts should not be distributed without parental consent.
The curriculum also aims at helping students “explore and discover their sexuality, sexual identities and gender expression,” which protesting parents claim goes far beyond sex education.
When coordinating the aforementioned protest, Informed Parents of California instructed parents to keep their children out of school and assemble in front of the offices of their local school districts in a show of unanimity. Parents were also instructed to submit a letter to the principal of the appropriate school to explain their child’s absence. This instruction was given based on Section 14, subsection B, part 4–an amendment to original bill–that clearly states parents have the right to keep their children out of classes where the previously mentioned curriculum will be used. It also states that educators and school boards are prohibited from imposing negative consequences on children or their parents if the parents choose to stop their children from participating in these classes.
When asked about the new curriculum one of our private algebra tutors in Irvine stated “I don’t feel that it’s my place to comment on whether or not I personally feel that the curriculum is appropriate for students, but I certainly support parents rights to have their voices heard; whether they are for, or against the new curriculum. ”
Parents are to receive communication from school boards about their right to opt out; however, Red State journalist, Kira Davis, claims that it is not uncommon for certain schools to fail to send such information in a timely manner.
America Figueroa, Informed Parents of California spokeswoman and mother of five, said that approximately 100 families from three different Indio, California school districts signed up to participate in the protest. Figueroa said that some parents are being bullied and harassed at school board meetings by sex education proponents and although they have written to lawmakers, they feel their concerns are being ignored overall.
Friedrichs believes that weak political engagement sometimes causes families to pay little or no attention to laws being passed by their elected officials. She stated that in this particular case, however, the effects of lawmakers’ power has suddenly become very real for many parents. In January, the public comment period for this bill closed and the curriculum is set to roll out in May.