The Christian organization Focus on the Family is now offering a resource guide for parents who want to be more involved in their children’s education. Sounds great! Sounds helpful!
Except this guide doesn’t talk about how to help your child with math, or critical thinking skills, or socialization. The content is a bit more, shall we say, narrow.
As the Christian Post makes clear, the guide is mostly meant to instill fear in parents who think LGBTQ students, science, and sex education are their worst enemies while implying that Christian students are constantly persecuted.
The guide features information on what children across the United States are learning in school, including “comprehensive sex education” and mandated instruction on LGBT history. It also touches upon efforts to allow trans-identified students to enter bathrooms, locker rooms and showers designated for the opposite sex, in addition to allowing biological males who identify as females to compete in girls’ sports.
Asserting that “students’ rights are being violated,” the guide explains that “students maintain their constitutional rights of religious freedom, freedom of speech, and freedom of peaceful assembly” at school and highlights efforts to restrict students’ religious expression.
It encourages parents to take an active role in their children’s education by taking advantage of school choice options, running for their local school board and observing their children’s classes to keep abreast of what they’re learning.
In the 124-page document, the word “transgender” appears 89 times. Trans people don’t talk about being trans as much as these Christians do.
The reality is that LGBTQ kids are at far greater risk than other students, and that’s largely because of what evangelicals are taught about them by groups like Focus. It’s not like parents have to accept everything that’s being taught if their churches teach something different. But these Christians aren’t content with anyone being taught about gender identity, sex education, or what religious freedom actually means. They want to impose their will on everyone in a way that would drive them up a wall if it happened the other way around. Students are better off with more knowledge, anyway; it’s a tried and true way of fostering compassion and overcoming bigotry.
Like it or not, children will encounter peers struggling with their sexual or gender identity — including children of parents who may be interested in what Focus on the Family is offering. These lessons not only help children understand themselves better (horrifying!), they also help other students better understand what some of their friends are going through.
If that’s not acceptable, then these parents should send their kids to a private Christian school.