Washington teacher's flyers ask 8th-graders to get abortion, condoms without parents' consent
Washington teacher handed out flyers to middle schoolers addressing the issues of abortion, birth control, consent and condoms
A teacher at Stewart Middle School, Washington, has come under fire for handing out flyers that say it is okay for 11-year-olds to have an abortion without parental consent. Eighth-grade students at the school received the flyer in science class. The contents of the flyer said students could consider getting an abortion or start taking birth control at whatever age they deem fit for themselves. The flyer which was handed to 13/14-year-olds at the school said that students didn't need parental consent to make those decisions.
While sex education in educational institutes is a step in the right direction, there are quite a few cases where things didn't end up well, majorly because of objections raised by parents. For instance, parents of students at the elite Columbia Grammar and Preparatory School in Manhattan were enraged at a porn literacy workshop held for the students. The same teacher named Justine Ang Forte who held the workshop showed sex education videos to first graders of another private school causing massive outrage.
Parents of students at the Washington school were left seething after the flyers handed to their 13-year-olds said they could seek an abortion or buy condoms "AT ANY AGE" without parental consent. The sheet also said 11 year olds could engage in sex as long as their partner was less than or two years older than them. The sheet stated 12 and 13-year-olds could have sex with someone who was less than or 3 years older than them and 14/15-year-olds could have sex with people four years older than them or less. The sheet also said anyone aged 14 and above does not need permission from a parent to get treatment for STDs or for HIV testing.
The school district claimed that the distribution of the flyers was a mistake. Eric Hogan, the assistant director of secondary education for the district, explained in a letter to parents that this was a case of a mix-up. The letter sent via email on June 17 said, "Thank you for sharing your concerns regarding a flyer sent home with eighth-grade students in science class at Stewart Middle School. This flyer is not part of our curriculum and should not have been sent home with students. We've checked with our other middle school and this flyer was only distributed to Stewart Students."
"The incident has been investigated in partnership with the District. Previously, Planned Parenthood taught within our schools and supplied the flyer that was distributed to students. We discovered a binder of curriculum materials was left behind for an upcoming teacher to use for this year, and this flyer was in the binder. Not realizing the flyer wasn't approved material, the teacher sent it home with students." The email from Hogan also said that the school had taken corrective action against their employee. He then apologized to parents on behalf of the school and the school district assuring them that all un-approved material has been removed from premises and teachers have been informed about what's included and excluded from the curriculum.