A Helena [Montana] mother says the final adoption of a highly controversial proposed health curriculum will cause her and her children “irreparable harm” and is asking a District Court judge to intervene.
UPDATE 9/29/10 - School board meets, changes nothing substantive (video):
UPDATE 9/17/10 (video below): Superintendent stands firm on curriculum with insignificant modifications
UPDATE 9/2/10: Speaking before large crowds in Montana, Dr. Miriam Grossman, a child psychiatrist and medical doctor, says the proposed curriculum provides too much information too soon, and not enough information later on.
For extensive background, read Montana Sex Ed Starting at Kindergarten
-- From "Mother sues over sex-ed curriculum" by Angela Brandt, Independent Record (Helena, MT) 8/21/10
The complaint calls into question the content of the curriculum and the process used to develop it. The complaint alleges the curriculum is in violation of the Montana Constitution because it was developed without any public hearings or meetings where parents could observe and participate.
According to court documents, [Kristi] Allen-Gailushas requested “a seat at the table” via a letter to Superintendent Bruce Messinger and was refused. She then asked to speak at a school board meeting and was ignored, the documents allege, thus violating her freedom of speech and expression.
Allen-Gailushas, a Republican candidate for Montana House District 82, announced her complaint alongside members of the Big Sky Tea Party Association late Friday afternoon at the Lewis and Clark County Courthouse. She said the curriculum was decided upon “behind closed doors.”
The proposed curriculum — a 62-page document that covers a wide spectrum of health concerns — is the result of two years of work by a committee. It takes a science-based approach in covering topics such as nutrition, relationships, mental health, environmental health and disease prevention.
Critics take particular issue with the proposal to teach fifth-grade students that sexual activity includes “vaginal, oral, or anal penetration” and ensure kindergarteners through third-graders know the anatomical names for body parts, including the penis and vagina.
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