Maryland Parents Furious After School District Tells Them They Can’t Opt Their Children out of Gender Identity Lessons

It appears progressives in the education system are taking their efforts to influence children even further. After years of concealing progressive indoctrination in K-12 classrooms, at least one school district is pushing the boundaries further.

Montgomery County Public Schools on March 23 sent an email informing parents that it would stop notifying them about gender identity lessons. This is part of an initiative to create a more “inclusive environment.” As if this wasn’t bad enough, the email also told parents that they would not allow them to opt their kids out of these lessons.

“MCPS expects all classrooms to be inclusive and safe spaces for students, including those who identify as LGBTQ+ or have family members in the LGBTQ+ community,” the email read. “A broad representation of personal characteristics within curricular or instructional materials promotes this desired outcome. Therefore, as with all curriculum resources, there is an expectation that teachers utilize these inclusive lessons and texts with all students.”

The email continued, explaining that in their vast benevolence, the district would still allow parents to remove their children from sexual health education.

“As is standard practice, when planning for instruction teachers/schools are encouraged to utilize a variety of resources to continue to promote an inclusive environment as outlined in the MCPS Core Values and Board Policy,” according to the email. “Students and families may not choose to opt out of engaging with any instructional materials, other than ‘Family Life and Human Sexuality Unit of Instruction’ which is specifically permitted by Maryland law. As such, teachers will not send home letters to inform families when inclusive books are read in the future.”

Naturally, this sparked quite a backlash against the authoritarians calling the shots at the district.

In response to the notification letter, 70 parents attended the Montgomery County School Board meeting on Tuesday to speak out against the policy. Parents argued that teaching gender identity lessons violated their religious beliefs and fought for their right to have a say in their children’s education, as reported by the Daily Caller News Foundation.

“None of us have asked for the books to be removed. None of us. We are just asking for what is fair and equitable and our own constitutional right to be able to have religious freedom and opt-out of something that goes against not only my Christian beliefs, but also the Jewish religion, the Muslims. There’s so many people who are not okay with this,” said Allie Altobelli, a Montgomery County Public Schools parent.

Parents attending the meeting held signs that said, “We do not co-parent with the government” and “Believe in parents to love all others,” according to Lindsey Smith, the chapter chair of Montgomery County Moms for Liberty, a grassroots group of parents. Until an opt-out option is given, parents plan to continue to protest at school board meetings and work with local faith groups to push back, Smith added.

“My child, you know, he’s gonna be reading ‘My Rainbow’ next year [in second grade],” Laura Wright, another parent, told the Daily Caller. “It’s a book about a transgender kid. He’s gonna be learning words like cisgender and transgender. That’s really heavy for his age. I wonder why aren’t they also learning about depression and suicide and addictions at this age then? It’s really heavy and I’m surprised.”

I knew this was coming. In fact, anyone who pays attention to these types of stories could see that, at some point, school districts were going to take things further than just refusing to notify parents about certain types of material being included in the curriculum.

It will not be surprising when other school districts take similar measures, forbidding parents from opting their kids out of certain types of lessons. This is because these people do not believe one’s children belong to them, but rather to the state. From their point of view, the government is the most appropriate entity to decide what children should be learning about in the classroom and parents should have little to no say in the matter.

This is a dangerous line of thinking because it suggests that the government has every right to cut their parents out of the process when it comes to educating their children. Indeed, this is why progressives oppose school choice – the last thing they want is for parents to have the ultimate authority over where and how their children are educated. It sounds like a great time to take your kids out of public school – especially if you happen to live in Maryland.

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