WAUWATOSA, Wis. (AP) — An effort to rescind a revised sex education curriculum in a suburban Milwaukee school district that includes instruction to students as young as kindergarteners has failed.
The Wauwatosa School Board heard a rare motion Tuesday night to rescind the Human Growth and Development curriculum that was adopted last month and includes lessons on sexual orientation and gender identity. But the effort to rescind failed when no board members seconded the motion.
The debate over the curriculum had been intense with a public comment period lasting more than four hours before the board approved the revision in August.
The curriculum outlines the level of instruction for the different grade levels.
For elementary schools, lessons include defining gender, gender roles, identifying proper names of body parts and learning about consent in an everyday context.
By eighth grade, middle schoolers will learn about different gender identities, sexual orientations, sexual activities and how social relationships are influenced by all of those things.
In high school, students will learn about abuse in relationships, safe sex, analyzing information on social media and a more thorough understanding of sexual orientation, gender and other social identities.
Parents or guardians can opt their students out of the program if they don’t feel comfortable with the subject matter.
“You’re asking teachers who teach math and science to then address really deep emotional issues and I think that’s a place that they don’t belong,” parent Paul Bruno told WISN-TV.
Board member Michael Meier said he offered the motion to rescind because some parents felt the curriculum and the state-mandated opt-out weren’t enough of a choice.
Meier said, “Other people of goodwill, concerned for their children and their heartfelt beliefs, wanted something different.”