Eagle Forum Legislative Alerts

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Eighth Graders Declare How Far They’ll Go

We’re all familiar with stories about school districts and nosey questionnaires for students and parents. A school in San Diego has taken this further and asked students to declare in front of the class how far they would be willing to go on a date. Eighth-grade girls in a family life and health class at Woodland Park Middle School were told to stand under signs indicating how far they would go sexually. The signs said things like “hugged,” “kissed,” “below the waist,” and “all the way.” The parents of one student complained, saying that their daughter felt confused, peer-pressured, and humiliated. They suggested that the school conduct an anonymous survey instead if it really needs this information. But even that would be inappropriate—the school doesn’t need to know any of this.

The school defended the exercise and called it a “dating lesson.” They claimed parents signed permission slips for the class—somehow, I doubt this activity was mentioned on those permission slips. Officials said the purpose was to “open the lines of communication between parents and students about dating expectations.” However, it’s not clear how declarations of sexual standards in front of classmates and the teacher would open communication between parents and students. How far a student is willing to go on a date is absolutely none of the school’s business. It’s a particularly inappropriate discussion when you consider that these girls were only thirteen or fourteen-years-old. The parents who complained said that they should be the ones in charge of this conversation and its timing.

I’m concerned to hear that the principal said that this obnoxious activity has gone on for several years, and this was the first complaint the school ever received. When did it become standard procedure for middle schoolers to spend class time deciding how sexual they want their dates to be, rather than learning algebra?

Listen to the radio commentary here:

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