Education in the Public Schools
20, No. 5 November 1995/Jamadi Al Thani 1416
article reproduced under permission of The Message.
Education: Gone too Far?
Education in the Public School Classroom
the early part of this century legislators and concerned men and
women began a process of removing children from coal mines and factories.
One of the results was to legislate a minimum age that one could
obtain a job. The other was a combination of creating compulsory
education and the rise of the public school. These results became
one of the high points of this country's history during the industrial
revolution. To the former peasant in European society and former
slaves this meant a chance at a life once reserved only for nobles
and former slave masters. The chance to finally read, calculate
one's wages, or to simply write one's name must have been one of
the most liberating experience one can imagine.
education, the means of that liberation, has now turned into an
oppressive force for many families. The once good, noble effort
and intention, is now the place for experiments in social engineering
by left wing, radical interest groups.
may have laughed at Jocelyn Elders (former Surgeon General) remarks
that masturbation be taught in the public school from 12th grade
down to kindergarten thinking that it would never happen. In the
reality of the public schools it may already be in the curriculum.
Parents in Newton, Massachusetts were fortunate to learn about the
inclusion of the subject from the town newspaper. Many parents are
not that lucky.
schools seem more and more reluctant to inform parents of the material
they are teaching children. Sessions designated for parental review
of course materials and curriculum guides have been found to be
watered down versions of the actual course, thus giving a parent
a false sense of security and control. In fact if a concerned parent
asks to see the lesson plan of a teacher or class they will be denied
access on the grounds of violation of the First Amendment.
Schools and teachers also seem willing to encourage disobedience
of parents, secrecy from parents, and to out right destroy religious
and moral teachings in this area.
grade health text, teaches; "Testing your ability to function
sexually and to give pleasure to another person may be less threatening
in early teens with people of your own sex." Also, "You
may come to the conclusion that growing up means rejecting the values
of your parents." Students were told not to take the text home,
but to keep it in their lockers.
who have found the courage to state their own beliefs are told that
they are uninformed, naive, bigoted and even laughed at. Even students
who have had the courage to say that the material violates family
and parental religious beliefs have been told that the teacher/instructor
will handle trouble from parents.
with the philosophy of moral relativism, the concept that absolute
values and rules of behavior are less important than individual
fulfillment, educators often challenge traditional values. Many
educators believe that parents do not adequately teach their children
about sex and the values taught in the home and religious institutions
are not socially progressive or viable. Believing that they are
better informed than the parent or religious community and thus
more qualified to give children sex related values the school becomes
some cases parents have been denied the opportunity to remove or
exclude their children from sex education programs they feel inappropriate.
Many districts feel that topics and activities such as condom distribution
are "too important" to be missed by any student, for whatever
reason, including parental objection.
Muslims we may say that "Allah is the same today as He was
yesterday. His commandments and laws do not change," but in
the wash of moral relativism, we simply look outdated, provincial
and inconsequential to our children. In this way schools actually
work against the parent, parental authority and the family's religious
is not hard to understand how children can be made to feel this
way toward their elders. They spend most of their waking hours,
nine months of the year, in an environment of moral relativism,
hostile to religion. Even if the child does make it to Islamic school
during the weekends and summer, and prays at home every night it
may not be enough to counter the overwhelming negative onslaught.
we live in a society awash in sexuality, the messages that our children
gain about themselves and morality is extremely important but now
may be harder to impart. One may well wonder what pressures Muslim
children feel in classrooms where sexual practices and experiences
are openly and publicly discussed, without any values attached.
Or where homosexuality is learned about, accepted and appreciated
as a lifestyle and no harm is seen in breaking down of the barrier
can easily see the dangers in these views, guarding against them
while Muslim children are in the public school system may be an
impossible task. Sex education is now a comprehensive program from
grades Kindergarten to 12th grade. If the parent has the ability
to remove a child from the sex education class, that may not be
enough. Sex education topics, like many topics are now integrated
throughout the curriculum. While a parent may have the child removed
from the specific sex education class, other school activities and
subjects may present the offensive material.
who have not allowed R rated movies in the home are surprised to
find their children watching them in English class.
were not informed prior to a transsexual speaking to a first grade
class about how sex changes take place. Nor were they informed prior
to a school assembly with mandatory attendance where an instructor
used four letter words, described the joys of anal and oral sex
and asked children to participate by licking condoms.
The national teacher's union is as guilty of promoting the sexual
social engineering ideas as school administrator and legislators.
Originally created to protect the rights of teachers and their salaries
the National Education Association, the national teacher's union,
has become increasingly political and has enjoyed successes in the
making of public policy. This last summer the NEA passed several
resolutions affecting sex education and the presentation of sexuality
in public schools. Some of their resolutions include:
Sexual Orientation Education. The National Education Association
recognizes the importance of raising the awareness and increasing
the sensitivity of staff, students, parents, and the community to
sexual orientation in our society. The Association therefore supports
the development of positive plans that lead to effective ongoing
training programs for education employees for the purpose of identifying
and eliminating sexual orientation stereotyping in the educational
setting. Such programs should attend to but not be limited to:
Accurate portrayal of the roles and contributions of gay, lesbian,
and bisexual people through out history, with acknowledgment of
their sexual orientation,
The acceptance of diverse sexual orientation and the awareness of
sexual stereotyping whenever sexuality and/or tolerance of diversity
Elimination of sexual orientation name-calling and jokes in the
Support for the celebration of a Lesbian and Gay History Month as
a means of acknowledging the contributions of lesbians, gays, and
bisexuals throughout history.
Sex Education. The Association recognizes that the public school
must assume an increasingly important role in providing the instruction.
Teachers and health professionals must be qualified to teach in
this area and must be legally protected from censorship and lawsuits.
The Association urges its affiliates and members to support appropriately
established sex education programs, including information on sexual
abstinence, birth control and family planning, diversity of culture,
diversity of sexual orientation, parenting skills, prenatal care,
sexually transmitted diseases, incest, sexual abuse, sexual harassment.
To facilitate the realization of human potential, it is the right
of every individual to live in an environment of freely available
information, knowledge, and wisdom about sexuality.
Academic and Professional Freedom. The National Education Association
believes that academic freedom is essential to the teaching profession.
Academic freedom includes the rights of teachers and learners to
explore and discuss divergent points of view. The Association further
believes that legislation and regulations that mandate or permit
the teaching of religious doctrines and/or groups that promote anti-public
education agendas violate both student and teacher rights. The Association
urges its affiliates to seek repeal of these mandates where they
implementation of E-9, Academic and Professional Freedom, actually
eliminates any good that these resolutions might accomplish. Sexual
abstinence and modesty can be and are viewed as religious doctrines
and thereby can be removed from the curriculum. Indeed, a thirteen
year-old who answered "abstinence" to a quiz question
asking," What is the best method against sexual diseases?
certainly need to have a close insight into what we are exposing
our children to under the guise of the achieving of academia.