Most Illinois School Districts Reject New Sex Education Standards

Most Illinois School Districts Reject New Sex Education Standards

Most Illinois school districts are rejecting the sex education standards that the legislature mandated in 2021. The age-inappropriate standards, that work to exclude parental involvement, are deliberately designed to sexualize and confuse children.

A list created by Awake Illinois shows that, so far, only 23 school districts have adopted the standards, while 540 school districts are opting out. Illinois has 860 school districts in all.

Sexual education is not mandatory for Illinois schools, but Senate Bill 818 specified that schools that teach sex ed must teach “comprehensive sexual health education,” which includes instruction on controversial sexual topics.

The bill says, for example:

Course material and instruction shall be inclusive and sensitive to the needs of students based on their status as pregnant or parenting, living with STIs, including HIV, sexually active, asexual, or intersex or based on their gender, gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, sexual behavior, or disability.

SB 818 says schools that teach sex ed must point students toward resources and “confidential services” – meaning no parental knowledge or involvement. The bill says:

Course material and instruction shall provide information about local resources where students can obtain additional information and confidential services related to parenting, bullying, interpersonal violence, sexual violence, suicide prevention, sexual and reproductive health, mental health, substance abuse, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, and other related issues.

The bill requires schools that offer sex ed to follow the so-called “National Sex Education Standards,” developed by a group called the “Future of Sex Education” (FoSE).

The title of the FoSE standards implies that these are official, scientific, government-created standards. But they were actually developed and marketed by a coalition of activist organizations that work to inculcate children into a radical “rights-based” and “pleasure-based” sexuality.

The FoSE standards require children in grades K-2 be taught to:

  • “Identify different kinds of families (e.g., nuclear, single parent, blended, intergenerational, cohabiting, adoptive, foster, same-gender, interracial).”
  • “Define gender, gender identity, and gender-role stereotypes.”

Do five-year-old children really need to be introduced to these adult concepts?

The standards for third through fifth grade suggest that children be able to:

  • “Explain common human sexual development and the role of hormones (e.g., romantic and sexual feelings, masturbation, mood swings, timing of pubertal onset).”
  • “Distinguish between sex assigned at birth and gender identity and explain how they may or may not differ.”
  • “Define sexual orientation.”
  • “Define and explain differences between cisgender, transgender, gender nonbinary, gender expansive, and gender identity.”

Should eight-, nine- and ten-year-old children learn at school about masturbation, sexual orientation and “sex assigned at birth”?

The groups behind the FoSE standards include SIECUS: Sex Ed for Social Change (their tagline explains their agenda) and Advocates for Youth, an LGBT activist organization.

Contributors and reviewers of the standards include Planned Parenthood, the nation’s largest provider of sex education curriculum; GLSEN, an LGBT activist education organization; the Southern Poverty Law Center; and Gender Spectrum, a transgender advocacy group.

Meg Kilgannon, senior fellow for Education Studies at Family Research Council, told The Washington Stand:

The thing about standards on sex education from groups like SIECUS is that they are mainly about politics and mere physical gratification and not about love. …

Standards like these steal from children their right to learn about how fearfully and wonderfully our bodies are made and what God’s plan for human sexuality really is. Sex cannot be demoted to use as a tool in the revolution – though the progressive Left works tirelessly to that end.

As children across the country go back to school, it’s important that parents pay attention to what their children are being taught about identity, relationships and sexuality.

We want to protect children, not damage them with inappropriate, sexually confusing education.

Related articles and resources:

Back To School For Parents: A busy parent’s guide to what’s happening in your children’s classrooms and practical steps you can take to protect them.

Bill that Teaches ‘Gender Identity’ to Kindergarteners Signed into Law by Illinois Governor

Sex Educators Say ‘Early Grades May Be the Best Time’ to Introduce Children to LGBT Issues

Sexualizing Schoolchildren: Comprehensive Sex Ed

The Medical Institute for Sexual Health has introduced “New K-12 Standards for Optimal Sexual Development.” These health-based standards can be adopted by states and school districts and are an alternative to the damaging FoSE guidance.


Photo from Shutterstock.

About The Author

Jeff Johnston

Jeff Johnston is a culture and policy analyst for Focus on the Family and a staff writer for the Daily Citizen. He researches, writes and teaches about topics of concern to families such as parental rights, religious freedom, LGBT issues, education and free speech. Johnston has been interviewed by CBS Sunday Morning, The New York Times, Associated Press News, The Christian Post, Rolling Stone and Vice, and is a frequent guest on radio and television outlets. He graduated Phi Beta Kappa from San Diego State University with a Bachelors in English and a Teaching Credential. He and his wife have been married 30 years and have three grown sons.