Voters in the state of Washington are deciding Tuesday on the nation’s first sex ed statewide ballot measure for public schools.
Referendum 90 is giving the state’s voters a voice on the content of sex education as well as when it is taught.
If rejected, the referendum will overrule a state law, signed by Gov. Jay Inslee (D), that mandates a graphic sex ed curriculum, including LGBTQ sexuality, affirmative consent, and bystander training. If voters do not approve the referendum, the decision on what is taught in the area of sex ed, and how, would continue as a local decision for individual school districts.
The Columbian reported, “What is taught in the older grades is what makes it one of the most progressive statewide sex ed mandates in the country,” because of the LGBTQ sexuality and affirmative consent content.
Breitbart News reported extensively on content of the curriculum in February.
Planned Parenthood, often a supplier of sex ed training and a driving force behind mandated sex ed, is a major supporter of the Washington state-mandated sex ed curriculum.
“Knowing that private parts are private, and who are your trusted adults that you can go to,” said Courtney Normand of Planned Parenthood, according to the Christian Post.
Pediatrician Dr. Grace Yelland also said young children need to learn about good touch and bad touch, so that they can be aware of sexual abuse.
Yelland added that many teens are exposed to pornography on their cell phones, and need to obtain fact-based sex ed.
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However, Informed Parents of Washington, while not opposed to sex ed in schools, objects to the early sexualization of children and the possibility of grooming young children for early sexual experiences.
Whitney Holz of the group urged parents to become aware of the type of information to which their children will be exposed, noted the Post. If voters approve Referendum 90, parents will still have the option of removing their children from sex ed classes. If the referendum is rejected, Holz said parents need to be involved in establishing the curriculum for their individual school districts.