California to teach LGBT history — starting at second grade

California to teach LGBT history — starting at second grade
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You’re never too young to learn about the important things in life. Like teaching sex education to kindergartners. Or, if you’re the State of California, LGBT history to second-graders:

In second grade, California students will learn about families with two moms or two dads. Two years later, while studying how immigrants have shaped the Golden State, they will hear how New York native Harvey Milk became a pioneering gay politician in San Francisco.

The State Board of Education unanimously approved those changes in classroom instruction Thursday to comply with the nation’s first law requiring public schools to include prominent gay Americans and LGBT rights milestones in history classes.


Allyson Chiu, who just finished 11th grade at Cupertino High School, said the revisions would make LGBT students more comfortable.

But how will it make heterosexual (oops: cis-gender) students feel? Matthew McReynolds, senior staff attorney at the Pacific Justice Institute, notes:

Certainly some families will be concerned about their second-graders learning about two-mom families, but I think parents would be much more alarmed if they knew that LGBT History Month, in the last few years, has promoted the notion that ‘America the Beautiful’ is a source of lesbian pride.

Another trenchant question raised by opponents is what traditional content will need to be scrapped to make way for this new touchy-feely material? There are so many class hours in a school year, and many school districts have already red-penciled some notable “dead white males” (think Thomas Alva Edison or the founding fathers) in favor of “more diverse” figures from history.

Ben Bowles

Ben Bowles

Ben Bowles is a freelance writer.

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