A handful of parents advocated unsuccessfully Wednesday night for the Clovis Unified School District board to fix the sex education curriculum they say does not comply with state law.
In August, the American Civil Liberties Union, with support from the Gay-Straight Alliance Network and the American Academy of Pediatrics, filed a lawsuit stating the district's ninth-grade curriculum does not meet state Department of Education guidelines. It is biased toward heterosexual sex education and medical inaccuracies are putting students at risk, said Ashley Morris with the ACLU.
Dawn-Marie Luna with the Gay-Straight Alliance Network said that students of the LGBT community feel ostracized in conversations about sex education under the current curriculum. Luna said the district is unwilling to include those kids in sex education discussions or doesn't want to address uncomfortable topics.
"It boggles my brain they aren't listening when they are being sued," Luna said.
The board accepted the curriculum unanimously without discussion.
District spokeswoman Kelly Avants said the board didn't comment because of the lawsuit. But she added that the vote reflects the board's belief that its sex education curriculum complies with state law.
"It is still flawed," said Aubree Smith, a nurse from Clovis. "It continues to teach medically inaccurate, misleading and biased information that is endangering our kids."
Smith said the textbook is a main point of contention because it has one chapter on sex education and that condoms are not on a list of ways to prevent sexually transmitted diseases. She said the list does include abstinence.
Another parent, Mica Ghimenti, said improvements have been made in junior high and high school curriculum to include contraceptives, but the textbook is outdated.
An ACLU attorney said an amended complaint will be filed soon because the new curriculum still does not comply with state law.
In other action, the Clovis Unified board adopted a $302.3 million spending plan for the budget year that begins July 1.
Avants said the budget includes a $40 million reserve and a surplus of $235,485.
She said the board is waiting to see how the state budget works out before deciding how to use the surplus.
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