Virginia Governor Glenn Youngkin recently signed a bill into law requiring that parents be notified of any sexually explicit content that students will be provided in instructional materials.
The bill (SB 656), according to a press release from Gov. Youngkin’s office, requires the Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) to develop model policies by July 31, 2022 that ensure “parental notification of any instructional material that includes sexually explicit content.”
Each local school board will have until January 1, 2023, to adopt the model policies that the VDOE comes up with.
The VDOE will also include information, guidance, procedures and standards for local school boards relating to:
- Ensuring parental notification.
- Directly identifying the specific instructional material and sexually explicit subjects.
- Permitting the parent of any student to review instruction material that includes sexually explicit content and provide, as an alternative, nonexplicit instructional material and related academic activities to any student whose parent so requests.
The Virginia state Senate passed the legislation on February 9, in a bipartisan vote of 20-18. All present Republican state senators voted for the legislation, as did two Democrat members.
On February 28, the Virginia state House also passed the legislation in a 52-48 vote.
“HB 938 … and SB 656, carried by Senator Siobhan Dunnavant, both deliver on my Day One promises to give parents a greater say in their children’s education,” said Gov. Youngkin in a statement following the signing of the bills.
“I’m pleased to sign them into law, along with many other bipartisan bills that will enhance education, improve public safety, provide tax relief, and make government work better for the people of Virginia.”
Old Dominion has been a hotbed for parents pushing back against the radical policies and actions of out-of-touch school board members.
Last year, in a school board meeting for Fairfax County Public Schools, one mom named Stacy Langton spoke out against two sexually explicit books, Gender Queer and Lawn Boy, that were available for children to read.
“Both of these books include pedophilia. Sex between men and boys … One book describes a fourth-grade boy performing oral sex on an adult male. The other book has detailed illustrations of a man having sex with a boy,” Langton pointed out.
And in October 2021, parents spoke out at a Loudon County Public Schools’ board meeting over reports of a “gender fluid” boy who sexually assaulted a 15-year-old girl in a school bathroom. Parents alleged the LCPS board had covered up the incident.
In fact, the indignation from parents over radical policies from local school boards proved decisive in Virginia’s 2021 gubernatorial election.
During the campaign, Democrat candidate Terry McAuliffe remarked, “I don’t think parents should be telling schools what they should teach.”
That comment sparked outrage from Virginia’s parents, and the election of now-Governor Glenn Youngkin.
According to exit polls released on election night, around half of Virginia voters said parents should have “a lot” of say in the children’s education.
If you’re worried about what your children may be leaning in their classrooms, check out Focus on the Family’s new, free resource 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.
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