How a child is best educated and the values upon which that education is based is a basic right of parents. This concept takes on added significance when the topic is sex education.
When sex education is about the basics – physiology of men and women, procreation, sexual health, etc. – it fulfills a purpose (as long as parents are made aware and approve its presentation to their children.) The trend today is to go far beyond that and weave “acceptance” of other genders and sexual lifestyles into the educational material, which are contrary to biblical views held by Christian parents.
One recent example here in North Dakota involved a video called The Laramie Project (sometimes presented as a play) that was shown to high school freshmen as part of their required sex-education course. The Laramie Project is purported to chronical the 1998 murder of Matthew Shepard, an openly homosexual young man, in Wyoming. The movie is regularly used by gay activists to bring their controversial point of view into public schools.
So how do we react as Christians when a video or play like this is included in our children’s sex-ed class? As followers of Jesus, we should take the lead in the education of our children and advocate for them with school officials and teachers.
- We believe all persons are created in the image of God, so we operate from a basis of love and respect towards all people, regardless of their personal beliefs.
- Guiding our children in how to treat others with respect can be best accomplished without exposing them to inflammatory or controversial materials. Our desire is to partner with teachers to ensure our children are taught how to respect others, while also respecting the values and faith we teach at home.
- When a school decides to show a controversial film, video, play or program that portrays violence against another person, parents should be alerted, and at the very least informed about the school’s or teacher’s intention.
- Finally, parents and students should have the opportunity to opt out of programs that expose their children to propaganda that does not respect the values or faith parents instill in their children at home.
My request is that parents use these key points to discuss the issue with educators when The Laramie Project or similar curricula are planned for our children. Through dialog and mutual respect, we can accomplish much and also provide tangible evidence that we, as Christians, simply want the freedom to teach our children in accordance with our deeply held beliefs.