SPOKANE, Wash. – The Spokane Public Schools Board was expected to discuss adopting a new sex education curriculum on Wednesday, but removed it from the agenda altogether.
Kevin Morrison with the school district told KREM 2 the discussion was pulled from the agenda because a member of the Human Growth and Development Citizens Advisory Committee withdrew its support for the curriculum over the weekend. The committee is made up of 18 members representing the community.
Morrison said since this curriculum is one of the few that parents have a right to “opt out” on, the district wants to make sure that all HGD Citizen’s Advisory Committee members are present during the adoption.
No date for adoption has been announced as the committee will not be meeting again until later this fall.
The new curriculum the board was planning to discuss was a Planned Parenthood program called “Get Real” for middle and high school students and was approved as a new state standard this year.
The current curriculum teaches middle school students human development and the reproductive system. High school students learn about biological, psychological and social aspects of sexual development.
Planned Parenthood’s “Get Real” curriculum would take a more targeted approach which includes using language that is inclusive to students who identify with the LGBTQ community according to the lesson plan.
The plan had some community members concerned.
The Spokane County Republican Party created a Facebook event to show the board how many people are against the “Get Real” curriculum.
The program said it promotes abstinence from sex as the healthiest choice for adolescents and provides comprehensive lessons on sexual health, sexuality and protection methods.
The “Get Real” curriculum has 27 sequential lessons in middle school and 11 in high school. In sixth grade, students would learn about the male and female reproductive system. Then, in the seventh grade, the curriculum starts to introduce lessons on sexual identity where “students review definitions of various terms related to sexual identity and examine myths and facts about sexual orientation,” according to the lesson plan.
Throughout the curriculum, parents are considered the primary sexuality educators of their children. To ensure participation, lesson plans include take-home family activities that encourage dialogue about sexual health topics.
For more information on the "Get Real" curriculum and lesson plans, visit their website.
This story is still developing and will be updated with new information.