Parent Group Challenges School District’s Planned Transgender Awareness Week


An initiative of grassroots is raising alarm about a Michigan school district’s plans to host a transgender awareness month in November.

According to the school district observation schedule, the Bloomfield Hills School District will observe Transgender Awareness Week. This week is for advocacy against discrimination and prejudice toward transgender communities. American Conservatives were informed by Great Schools Initiative, a Michigan-based parent rights in education group that they are considering legal action against the school district for implementing the week.

Monica Yatooma, Great Schools Initiative spokesperson and Director for Strategic Partnerships, said that it is not only about transgender people. But this is about the topic or the discussion around sexuality, and gender identity. Parents should be able to give their children the option to opt-in or out. This shouldn’t be something that is forced upon people.

Michigan law requires that every sexual education program, including materials, resources, goals, and objectives, be approved by the Sex Education Advisory Board. The supervisor of the board must be a physician, nurse, or educator. Parents, teachers, clergy, and other community health professionals must also be included on the board.

Yatooma claimed that the school district did not advise SEAB about the approval of Transgender Awareness Week. Yatooma claims that instead, the superintendent approved the week as a week of district observation, which Yatooma believes is a violation of the law.

Yatooma said that he had spoken to the president of their school board, and also reached out to their school boards. “He said that the district calendar and observance calendars don’t have to go through the board. This is something that’s done in schools within the school district. We asked the superintendent about how it is done. We are concerned that the transgender awareness week is not in compliance with the law. It’s not like ‘Holocaust Awareness Week or the ‘Detroit Rugby Fans Awareness Week. They’re discussing sexuality, gender identity, and other topics. The SEAB board must be consulted whenever you talk about this topic: gender identity, gender, and sexuality.

Transgender Awareness Week, which runs from Nov. 13 – 19, is a week where “transgender people, their allies, take action to bring awareness to the community by educating and sharing stories and experiences with the public,” according to the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation website, a group that accepts LGBTQ people. Transgender Remembrance day, which is a day to honor transgender activist Rita Hester, who was murdered in 1998, will be held on Nov. 20. It’s listed on the website of the district.

On September 25, 2022, protestors gathered to demonstrate against the ban on books at Dearborn’s Henry Ford Centennial Library. After a parent complained about the content of seven Dearborn Public Schools books, protestors gathered to demonstrate against their removal. They also blocked access to an electronic book app that featured thousands of titles.

Yatooma stated that the Michigan chapter Great School Initiative has created an “opt-out form” for parents to allow their child to be exempted from the sexual education curriculums.

Yatooma explained that the form was created in collaboration with Thomas More Society lawyers. Parents and others can visit the website to print this form and return it to their schools. Tell them that you want to stop all sex-related activities. Because I want this to be taught to my child at home. Or, they can opt out of the actual class.

Schools across the country are using sexual education materials and curriculums, despite opposition from parents. The Hillsborough County School Board, Tampa, Florida voted on Sept. 20 to approve a sexual education curriculum that teaches 12-year-olds how condoms can be used, despite parental disapproval.

In September, the New Jersey Department of Education stated that it would intervene in schools that don’t implement the state-mandated curriculum in sexual education that teaches fifth graders all aspects of “pregnancy possible.”

Yatooma stated that parents need to be aware of their right to opt-out. Parents don’t realize this. They can go to our website if they have any questions or need some help. You can fill out the form.

Bloomfield Hills School District didn’t immediately respond to our request for comment.


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