Tag Archives: Public School

Parents Upset After Middle School Girls Forced Into ‘Lesbian Kiss’ at NY School

Reposted from the Christian Post

Parents Upset After Middle School Girls Forced Into ‘Lesbian Kiss’ at NY School

By Leonardo Blair , CP Contributor

A middle school in New York has been managing complaints from angry parents after their daughters complained that they were forced to ask each other for kisses and pretend to be lovers during an anti-bullying presentation on homosexuality and gender identity.

A recent report noted that the controversial session which parents were not informed about, took place at Linden Avenue Middle School in Red Hook, N.Y., just outside of Poughkeepsie. The presentation was conducted by a team of students from Bard College.

According to the report, the 13- and 14-year-old girls were introduced to terms like “pansexual” and “genderqueer” during the session where they were instructed to ask each other for kisses.

“She told me, ‘Mom, we all get teased and picked on enough; now I’m going to be called a lesbian because I had to ask another girl if I could kiss her,'” concerned parent Mandy Coon, told reporters about her daughter’s complaint. “They also picked two girls to stand in front of the class and pretend they were lesbians on a date.”

Coon said she was particularly upset about the situation because the school did not give her the opportunity to opt her daughter out of the session.

“I am furious,” she said. “I am her parent. Where does anyone get the right to tell her that it’s okay for her to have sex?”

Another unidentified parent agreed: “The school is overstepping its bounds in not notifying parents first and giving us the choice. I thought it was very inappropriate. That kind of instruction is best left up to the parents.”

The workshop which divided the students by sex, also made a presentation to boys at the middle school who were advised to carry a condom in their pocket at all times and given tips on how to identify a “slut.”

“I was absolutely furious – really furious,” an anonymous parent told reporter Todd Starnes. “These are just kids. I’m dumbfounded that they found this class was appropriate.”

School Superintendent Paul Finch reportedly told The Poughkeepsie Journal that the presentations were “focused on improving culture, relationships, communication and self-perceptions.”

“[We] may require more notification to parents” in the future, he said. He maintained, however, that the sessions are required under the state Dignity for All Students Act. It prohibits harassment and bullying in the classroom.

According to an open letter to parents from Finch posted to the school’s website, he met with parents on April 16 to discuss the topics that they would address in the ongoing sessions of the communication workshop for eighth grade students.

“These topics included: cultural stereotypes related to gender and gender identity, positive strategies for conflict resolution, and issues related to personal consent in relationships. All of these topics support our efforts to create a school environment that is free from discrimination, harassment, and bullying,” he noted.

“I appreciated the thoughtful dialogue about communication, supervision, and follow-up. I am confident that the middle school faculty will incorporate many of the suggestions into future programming.”
Read more at http://www.christianpost.com/news/parents-upset-after-middle-school-girls-forced-into-lesbian-kiss-at-ny-school-94523/#gjYl6Ugv6EwABUt8.99

 

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Valedictorian fights judge’s ban on graduation prayer

Valedictorian fights judge’s ban on graduation prayer

By Jim Forsyth Jim Forsyth Thu Jun 2, 5:44 pm ET

SAN ANTONIO (Reuters) The valedictorian of a high school in a San Antonio suburb where a judge has banned formal prayers at graduation ceremonies on Saturday is fighting for an opportunity to lead the crowd in prayer.

On Thursday, the North Texas-based Liberty Institute, a nonprofit that describes itself as seeking to limit government and promote Judeo-Christian values, filed a lawsuit on behalf of the valedictorian of Castroville’s Medina Valley High School, Angela Hildenbrand.

“After all that I’ve been taught about the freedoms of speech, expression and religion in our country, I am disappointed that my liberties are being infringed upon by this court’s ruling to censor my speech,” Hildenbrand said at a press conference at the Alamo.

U.S. District Judge Fred Biery ruled on Tuesday that the Medina Valley School District may not proceed with plans to include an invocation or benediction at the ceremony, saying that doing so would make it sound like the school is “sponsoring a religion.”

He said student speakers may reference God in their remarks.

Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott on Wednesday asked a federal appeals court to overturn the order.

“This is part of an ongoing attempt to purge God from the public setting, while at the same time demanding from the court increased yielding to all things agnostic and atheistic,” Abbott said.

He said Congress begins each session with a prayer to God, and Biery’s ruling would allow a student to “bend over in honor of Mecca,” but not lead a prayer to the Christian God.

The case has been seized by both sides in the ongoing debate over references to religion in schools and in public places.

The judge’s ruling followed a lawsuit against the district by agnostics Christa and Danny Schultz saying their son might not take part in graduation if he were forced to participate in religious activities.

Ayesha Kahn, an attorney for Americans United for Church and State, which represents the Schultzes, said earlier this week that the district “has been flouting the law for decades.”

But some residents of the town of about 3,000 about 20 miles west of San Antonio, which still strongly retains the flavor of the French Catholics who founded it in the 1850s, object to halting the community tradition of invocation at graduation.

“My best friend last year said the prayer, and it was really cool that my best friend, who I have known since I was three years old, said the prayer, and now it turns out that she may be the last one to ever say the prayer at Medina Valley,” Kelsey Johnson, who graduated from the high school last year, told Reuters.

(Editing by Corrie MacLaggan and Jerry Norton)

I can understand both sides of the argument, but doesn’t there have to be a point where the actions or words of an individual reflect solely on the individual and not an organization? If an organization financially sponsors a movement, then that organization should have to deal with the public opinion right? If an employee does contributes financially, no one assumes that the company supports the same position right? Why is it different with religion? Why can I not say in a public forum that these are my beliefs and are not necessarily the beliefs of the school? Television stations do that all of the time for paid advertisers and that seems to work.

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