A March 23-24 book fair at Teeland Middle School in Wasilla featured books celebrating gay teen romance, LGBTQ activism, queer fantasy and transgender sexual identity.
Held in the 6th-through-8th grade school library, the event took place during school hours, as well as before and after school.
The event was jointly hosted by Fireside Bookstore, a Palmer-based business that partners with LGBTQ activist groups to promote transgenderism and homosexuality among Mat-Su youth.
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A Teeland student took photos of several books which were on display for children to peruse. These included the following titles:
— “In Deeper Waters,” by F.T. Lukens: This book features a bisexual boy and his romantic same-sex partner who fall in love while on a high seas adventure.
— “This is Our Rainbow,” edited by Katherine Locke and Nicole Melleby: This is billed as the first “LGBTQ+ anthology for middle-graders.” It features LGBTQ characters who experience their first kiss, coming out parties, same sex crushes, non-binary heroes and queer fantasies.
— “The Stonewall Riots,” by Gale Pitman: This book glorifies the 1969 Stonewall Riots in New York, in which violent LGBTQ rioters are credited with igniting the LGBTQ+ political agenda.
Parents were allowed to attend the event, but not required.
Teeland Principal Jo Ann Hinds said the school advertised the book fair, but did not mention that the event would contain LGBTQ-themed books. She added that parental permission was not required for students to attend the fair or purchase books.
“I do think, though, it’s important to know kids had an option, whether or not they go and look at the book fair books,” Hind said. “So if kids don’t want to go look at them, they don’t have to.”
According to Alaska Statute, a school must provide parent notification “not less than two weeks before any activity, class, or program that includes content involving human reproduction or sexual matters is provided to a child.” The law also emphasizes that parents have a right to “review the content of these activities or programs before they are offered to their child. While a book fair may not technically be part of the curriculum, it may well be considered an activity that is facilitated and provided by the school.
— Contact Teeland Middle School Principal Jo Ann Hinds at JOANN.HINDS@MATSUK12.US or (907) 352-7507.
— Contact Teeland librarian Christine Zahrt at CHRISTINE.ZAHRT@MATSUK12.US or (907) 352-7526.
— Contact Mat-Su Schools Superintendent Randy Trani at Randy.Trani@matsu12.us or (907) 746-9255.
— Click here to contact the Mat-Su Borough School Board.