Union to 'vigorously' defend any teacher who defies province by teaching current sex-ed curriculum

The union that represents Ontario elementary public school teachers vowed to "vigorously defend" any educator who uses the modernized sex-ed curriculum in the classroom this school year in defiance of the province's decision to impose an outdated version.

In a fit of narrow-minded post-election pique, the Ontario government revoked a studied and reformed sex education curriculum that was rolled out in 2015 to replace one that hadn't been updated since 1998. This old curriculum didn't include any information on consent, gender-identity, or homosexuality. They claim they pulled it so it could be reviewed by teachers, parents, and professionals. However, the 2015 curriculum had been reviewed by teachers, parents, and professionals. The government pulled it to pander to a voter base more concerned with antiquated, right-wing blindness, than opening its eyes to the realities of the current era.

Many teachers, schools, and boards, were deciding on their own to continue to teach the revamped 2015 curriculum regardless of what the government said, and for this I applaud them. Now, the teachers union has stepped in saying that it will defend any teachers who do decided to teach the upated curriculum against any government backlash they might face, and for that I applaud them.

The commentary from many quarters, however, is still that knee-jerk idiocy of parents should be teaching their kids about sex. Why? Why should parents do it? It's medical information. How many parents, as well, are anywhere remotely equipped to deal with questions and concepts of same-sex partnerships, cyberbullying, transgender issues, consent? Especially since some of the kids being taught that information in school, might need to defend themselves against the very parents some think should be the only ones allowed to teach their children about sexuality and sex.

The idea of moralising whether or not children are taught a thing, should be far down the list of concerns - certainly much, much lower than the fact that these things are happening to kids right now, and they need to be given the tools to deal with them. I sure as hell wouldn't ever have talked about any of these matters with the person raising me who was also the person emotionally abusing me; who also, coincidentally, was the same person who tried to sexually molest me. And as for the other half of that pair, they were very ill-educated, and would have had absolutely no clue what to do had I gone to them with any issue at all. That person wouldn't even explain my period to me, but gave me a pamphlet and left me to figure it out on my own. Possibly if she'd had a conversation with my mother when she was 15, my mother might not have got pregnant with me. My mother, for the record, didn't know how she'd become pregnant, as no one ever explained the birds and bees to her. But teenage pregnancy is the least of the worries of the modern age.

What happened to me, however, is far from the point. Why we're still trying to moralise these issues in this day and age, is an antiquated, short-sighted knee-jerk. Teaching children the proper names for body parts is not dirty, and is not immoral. Teaching your kids how to say no, gives them empowerment and self-determination, and is not immoral. Teaching a girl that it's called 'vagina', is not immediately going to make her go out and insert a penis into it - or anything else, for that matter, and is not immoral. I can state, for a fact, that girls with proper information are far less likely to engage in pubescent sex, become victimised, or get pregnant. I've seen it, many times, with my very own eyes, with the children of family and friends.

If you're worried that hearing about a penis is going to make your son gay, I've got news for you - the penis wasn't making your son gay, he was already gay before he heard about the penis. Almost every single person I know who's gay, trans, or any version of either or both, knew at a very young age that they were, as one gay friend once put it, 'different'; and they knew these things in an era when there was no one to turn to, no one to ask questions of, no one to get support from, and turning to parents tended to result in moral, emotional, and physical abandonment - as has happened with someone I know personally, whose parent won't acknowledge their transition and won't speak to them at all. If nothing else, those folks need to know that what they're going through is not wrong, and that there's someone out there who will listen to them and help them and support them.

None of this curriculum has anything to do with you or your morality - this is about educating your kids for reality. Why on earth would you be so dead set against that? Do you hate your kids that much that you want to keep them ignorant, unable to cope, and unable to find help for whatever they're questioning or experiencing? What on earth are you so afraid of? It's just information - like proper names and actual medical facts - none of those things are evil, immoral, or harmful. If you have a moral issue with your children being informed, I suggest you get over it for the sake of your children, because they are being abused, and victimised, and are questioning, and they need help, all the information they can get, and not a wall of silence or ignorance. These things aren't waiting for your children to be 'ready' (or for you to be). Any 1950s Disney morality, doesn't trump the needs of your children.

2018 08 13 - 22:27

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