Soon after the Board of Education announced a meeting to revisit the issue of the sexual health curriculum, it appears that liberals and progressives are trying to pull a fast one to try to undo the Board of Education’s previous “opt-in” policy.
Blogger’s Note: For those interested, information regarding the Board of Education meeting was first derived from Honolulu Civil Beat (HCB). Had HCB done their due diligence, they would have recognized the discrepancy in the meeting memo and exhibits that they had linked in their news stub. For those interested in attending the meeting, it is being held on Tuesday, June 16 at 1:30 p.m. In Room 404 of the Queen Liliuokalani Building (1390 Miller Street). The meeting notice can be found on the Board of Education website.
The two documents in questions regarding the meeting can be found here (meeting exhibits) and here (memo regarding sexual education curriculum). The Board of Education has previously indicated their wish to keep the opt-in policy for sexual education curriculum. This was echoed in a memo to board chair Don Horner proposing a policy where:
“…A student shall be provided with sexual health instruction only if the student’s parent or legal guardian provides prior consent. …”
While these changes, referred to as policy 103.5 are consistent with what many of the faith-based community are advocating for, it is directly contradicted by exhibits offered as a supplement. The exhibit version of the proposed policy 103.5 states:
“A student shall be excused from sexual health instruction only upon the prior written request of the student’s parent or legal guardian. …”
The discrepancy between the two documents creates an open door to flip to the dreaded “opt-out” policy. Whether the discrepancy was intentional, it poses a grave risk to the work of community members and like-minded legislators who sought to protect parents and families by compromising to a policy of “opt-in”. While it would be reasonable for parents to believe that this fight is over, that does not seem to be like the reality.
With the confusion shrouding tomorrow’s Board of Education meeting, parents must once again show up to the meeting to defend against aggressively liberal sex education programs like Pono Choices. It is not clear, based on available documentation, whether the Board of Education is considering the “opt-in” or “opt-out” for sex education curriculum.
Blogger’s note: This post was written with some urgency as to get the word out. Please pardon any grammatical or other minor errors until the original post can be revisited.