It’s been a long and contentious road, marked by unprecedented community resistance, hundreds of letters and many hours of public testimony, but the Fairbanks North Star Borough School District is pushing ahead with recommendations that the school board approve a controversial plan to include LGBTQ content in high school classes next year.
At the April 7 school board meeting, the district will deliver a presentation asking the school board to green light a series of curriculum changes to K-12 grade social studies and 7-10 grade English classes.
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The proposed social studies updates include a semester-long course that traces and celebrates the LGBTQ social and political agenda, while framing the controversial movement in terms of the “historic civil rights experiences” of African Americans and other marginalized groups.
While not on the April 7 school board agenda, the district is also finalizing the addition of a 11-12 grade literature course that pushes the LGBTQ books, plays and poetry that explore issues of sexual violence, rape, secret lust, divorce, masturbation and pornography.
There has been tremendous public outcry over the LGBTQ materials, and the district has resisted efforts to remove the controversial material.
Melanie Hadaway, executive director of teaching and learning, will deliver the administration’s recommendations with hopes for final approval at the school board’s April 21 meeting.
According to the April 7 agenda, the district will attempt to assure school board members that their recommendations are based on a lengthy public process that included input from teachers, parents and the wider community. In reality there has been tremendous public outcry over the LGBTQ materials, and the district has resisted efforts to remove the controversial material.
Due to the coronavirus outbreak, the meeting is being held via video conference for board members. The meeting, which begins at 6 p.m. on April 7, remains open to the public, however, for in-person testimony. Only 10 people will be allowed in the Board Room of the Administrative Center (520 Fifth Avenue). Once 10 people are present, no one else will be allowed to enter the room.
The other option is to send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. These emails will be read into the public record and must include a person’s first and last name and city of residence. Reading of each email is limited to three minutes.
HOW TO PARTICIPATE
* Real-time audio from the district’s webpage
* Televised live on GCI Cable – channel 14
Click here for background on the curriculum controversy.
Click here to contact members of the Fairbanks School Board.