For the record, anything not cited as a source, in quotations, is in my own words. If you find discrepancies, it will not be because I have mindlessly copy and pasted an email forward. This is my research and I confidently sign my name to it.
Sexual education (i.e. the subject in school in which marriage would be “taught”) is NOT required in California schools, and any school which does (96% do according to a study done in 2003 by PB Consulting, entitled “Sex Education in Public Schools,” a number accepted and quoted by the California Department of Education) must follow the laws listed in the Education Code.
“EC Section 51933 requires that comprehensive sexual health education shall be age appropriate; medically accurate and objective; available on an equal basis to English language learners; appropriate for use with pupils of all races, genders, sexual orientations, and ethnic and cultural backgrounds; and appropriate for and accessible to pupils with disabilities. This education shall encourage students to communicate with their parents or guardians about human sexuality and shall also teach respect for marriage and committed relationships. It shall not teach or promote religious doctrine nor reflect or promote bias against any person on the basis of any category protected by the non-discrimination policy codified in EC Section 220.” – Source is the California Department of Education website, FAQ #4.
Parents must be notified, and have every right to withdraw their child.
“The law recognizes that while parents and guardians support the teaching of medically accurate, comprehensive sex education in schools, they have the ultimate responsibility for teaching their children about human sexuality; they may choose to withdraw their children from this instruction.
EC sections 51937 and 51938 explain that parents or guardians must be notified (passive consent) by the school at the beginning of the school year about planned comprehensive sexual health education and HIV/AIDS prevention education, be given an opportunity to review materials, and be given the opportunity to request in writing that their child not participate in the instruction.
In addition, to facilitate the collection of data needed by researchers to evaluate the effectiveness of sex education and other teen pregnancy prevention efforts, the law has modified the parental consent procedures governing student assessments. This law permits schools to administer anonymous, voluntary, confidential, age-appropriate surveys or questionnaires in which students are asked about their health risk behavior, including sexual activities and attitudes. Parents must be notified of any planned assessments, be given the opportunity to review the assessments and, in grades seven through twelve, and be given the opportunity to request in writing that their children not participate. Prior to seventh grade, parents must give their active consent in order for their child to participate.” Source once again is the California Department of Education website, FAQ #15.
To review, while schools are not required to teach sex ed, most chose to, by the guidelines set, which require that the instruction be age appropriate and teach respect for marriage and committed relationships. If that is not a lesson you would like your child to learn, you have every opportunity to withdraw your child.
However you feel about Prop 8, those are the facts as they relate to education. I have not attempted to give them a spin for either side.
That said, please keep in mind that you are not voting for or against gay marriage (no gay couple is out there waiting, saying, “California, may we?”), you are voting for or against eliminating the rights of the minority on the whim of the majority, and when you vote to eliminate the rights of someone you disagree with, you are showing great faith that you will always be in the majority, in everything, for the rest of your life.
And if you do so, I won’t call you wrong so much as very, very daring.
….. but also wrong.
– Sarah Barrick, also known as Valancy Jane