Equality Virginia Supports Proposed Family Life Education Curriculum for Fairfax County Public Schools

Recommendations Promote Tolerance and Non-Discrimination

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – May 21, 2015 Contact: Kirsten Bokenkamp, [email protected]; 804-643-4816 RICHMOND – Equality Virginia fully supports the Family Life Education Curriculum Advisory Committee’s (FLECAC) recommendations to the Fairfax County School Board regarding Family Life Education curriculum revisions. The recommendations strive to “promote an environment free of bias and discrimination,” and include curriculum that introduces students in grades seven and eight to concepts including sexual orientation and gender identity. “This shouldn’t be controversial,” said James Parrish, executive director of Equality Virginia.  “The proposed curriculum will benefit all students, promote understanding and knowledge, and make Fairfax County schools a safer and more welcoming place for everybody.” Members of the newly formed Northern Virginia Advocates for Equality will provide testimony at Thursday’s meeting.  According to their group statement, “The recommendations are a step in the right direction for creating respectful and accepting educational environments for all students in Fairfax County.” The proposed curriculum, in accordance with broad scientific consensus, will teach that LGBT people are normal within the spectrum of human development.  Parents will still be able to opt their children out of Family Life Education lessons, including, but not limited to the sexual orientation and gender identity lessons. FLECAC, a standing citizen advisory committee comprised of school board appointees, community members, students, teachers, and administrators will present its recommendations to the Fairfax County School Board on Thursday May 21, 2015.  Public comments will be accepted from May 21 through June 19, and final School Board approval is set for June 25, 2015.