A mother who fought a public school’s efforts to hide sex-ed materials from her is spreading the word about legislation that gives parents more authority.
SB 673, introduced by state Sen. Mike Morrell, is set to be heard and debated in coming days in the Senate Education Committee.
If passed, the legislation would require an online curriculum for parents to review, and it gives parents the right to decide if their children participate in the sex-ed courses -- a so-called “opt in” requirement. Parents in California have complained that the "opt out" option is often hidden from them.
Sen. Morrell authored the bill with input from Denise Pursche, a mother of two middle-schoolers who found herself in an unlikely activist role after requesting to review sex-ed materials at Mt. Diablo Unified School District.
OneNewsNow first reported on Pursche’s school fight in an April 2019 story: the curious and persistent mother was stonewalled by the school until she finally reviewed a “Sexual and Reproductive Anatomy” worksheet that requires fifth graders to identify a woman’s sexual anatomy.
The sex-ed lessons, created by the far-left Advocates for Youth, are described on the Advocates website as "honest, inclusive sex education for all students."
California's public schools are following a separate Advocates sex-ed program that aligns with the state's controversial Healthy Youth Act.
According to the California Family Council, which has supported Pursche, it took the mother more than a month to view the sex-ed lessons because the school sent her only lesson titles and summaries. When she demanded to see the materials, she was advised the only way to review the materials was to visit the school.
"The story that I tell of the district hiding the curriculum from me,” Pursche tells OneNewsNow, “is a story that's told thousands of times by parents throughout the state of California."
The mother-turned-activist, who helped write the language for SB 673, says she overheard school officials openly suggesting that parents should be kept in the dark or else they would pull their children from the classroom.