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Elementary lessons on 'gay' issues now tied to reading, social studies

April 04, 2008
By Bob Unruh, WorldNetDaily

The superintendent of a public school that sparked a federal lawsuit by teaching homosexuality to children as young as kindergarten has told another worried parent he can review course material, but he has no right to withdraw his child from class during lessons.

The lawsuit, on which WND has reported extensively, was filed by David Parker, whose child was in a class at Estabrook Elementary in  Lexington, Mass.

Parker's strenuous objection to not being notified when lessons concerning homosexuality were presented landed him in jail overnight. His subsequent lawsuit resulted in a court verdict that essentially concludes parents have no rights to control what their children are taught.


Estabrook Elementary

The court ruling adopted the arguments submitted by several pro-homosexual organizations that stated they had rights to children in public schools. However, Parker has confirmed for WND the case is being prepared for appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court because of the far-reaching impacts of the ruling.

Unless the case is overturned, Parker told WND, "it now would allow teachers in elementary schools to influence children into any views they wanted to, behind the backs of parents, to a captive audience, and against the will of the parents if need be."

In the latest confrontation, publicized by the traditional values advocates at Mass Resistance, Lexington Supt. Paul Ash told a parent who also wanted to be advised when homosexuality was being taught to children that the school would not cooperate.

"We are not required to inform parents in advance of teaching units that include same gender parents or required to release students when such topics are discussed," Ash told the parent in an e-mail posted by Mass Resistance. "The appeals court dismissed the claim that parents have a right to require the school provide advance notice or the right to remove their children.

"In addition, the school committee has decided that teachers must be able to teach topics they feel are appropriate without the requirement parents be notified in advance," Ash wrote.

The e-mail was in response to parent Shawn Landon's request to be notified when such material would be promoted. His concerns, in return, followed an announcement from the school that it was "creating an inclusive environment and embracing diversity" by expanding its promotions of such alternative lifestyles.

"A group of administrators, teachers, and community members formed the 'Windows and Mirrors' subcommittee to develop a comprehensive, inclusive K-5 Diversity curriculum … [which] promotes acceptance and understanding of the diversity of our town, country, and world, and includes both historical lessons on civil rights and contemporary lessons of families," Ash had announced.

Those "contemporary lessons of families," Ash continued, will include a focus on "gay and lesbian parents."

Landon, after getting word of the school's plans, wrote Martha Batten, Estabrook principal, "I will absolutely require prior notification to any discussion, education, training, reading or anything at all related (even remotely) to homosexuality. It is quite clear by the e-mail I just received that you have a very specific agenda and my family will be exercising our rights to be notified and not to participate. This goes against everything we believe and practice…"

Batten forwarded the e-mail to Ash, who responded that the court's have "established Lexington's right" to teach diversity units, including stories that show same gender parents. He also said there's no need for the schools to let parents know, or even to permit parents to withdraw their children if they would somehow happen to find out.

He did offer a solution: Landon could review the material ahead of time, so he would know what indoctrination would be presented at some later point.

"If your child happens to be placed in a class with a teacher who will be teaching the four of five diversity units, you will then know what will be taught and will be able to talk to your son or daughter about the topics at home," the superintendent said.

Landon responded with his "disappointment."

"Your complete rejection of my basic rights as a parent is nothing less than outrageous and discriminatory," he said. "It is entirely unacceptable. I must insist that I be notified prior to my child being exposed to this horribly offensive material."

"Good for you, Mr. Landon!" officials at Mass Resistance posted. "It's about time more people stood up and were counted. It's actually amazing and outrageous that people like Paul Ash … are allowed to be educators… What kind of human beings would do this to parents and children?"

Parker and his lawyers say they will be seeking permission to submit the dispute to the U.S. Supreme Court over such indoctrination.

Parker said the ruling from the 1st Circuit Court of Appeals essentially concluded that it is no burden on parents' free exercise of religion to have their children taught ideas at a public school that violate the parents' religious teachings.

"But that ignores the fact that the most basic free exercise is your teaching your children right from wrong in their formative years," he said. "That is completely being undermined by the rulings of these federal courts so far.

"Teachers are being postured to have a constitutional right to coercively indoctrinate little children [into whatever they choose to teach,]" he said. "It's not just exposure to an idea, to the [offensive] books, It's the teacher's manipulating the mind of children to embrace dangerous ideologies, because the teacher happens to believe it's a good ideology.

"It brings these battlegrounds to the psyches and minds of little children," Parker said. "Their little minds should not be the battleground for culture wars.

"Proper boundaries have to be established. This is absolutely of national significance. No parent wants to put their very little children in positions in which they're minds are being used as battlegrounds," he said.

He warned pursuit of such agendas would cause public schools to implode. That's an issue that California already is facing, as WND has reported. There, a coalition of organizations is encouraging parents and providing resources for them to be able to remove their children from public schools. The coalition's goal is to take 600,000 children from California's public districts, because of a new state law there requiring indoctrination that not only is pro-homosexual, but also affirms bisexuality, transsexuality and other alternative lifestyle choices.

"The human secularist religion of the [National Education Association,] buttressed by the power of the state, will now turn public schools into the next secular synagogues," Parker said. "[They say], 'We're just preparing the kids to be citizens.' But it's a religion. It is a devious and evil form of religion."

The 1st U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the Lexington, Mass., school district can teach children contrary ideas without violating their parents' rights to exercise religious beliefs.

"Public schools," opined Judge Sandra L. Lynch, "are not obliged to shield individual students from ideas which potentially are religiously offensive, particularly when the school imposes no requirement that the student agree with or affirm those ideas, or even participate in discussions about them."

As WND reported in 2006, U.S. District Judge Mark L. Wolf originally dismissed the civil rights lawsuit, concluding there is, in fact, an obligation for public schools to teach young children to accept and endorse homosexuality.

Parker said if this topic is approved, why not any other topic, up to and including Nazism?

The Parker dispute began in the spring of 2005 when the Parkers then-5-year-old son brought home a book to be shared with his parents titled, "Who's in a Family?" It came in a "Diversity Book Bag" and depicted at least two households led by homosexual partners.