Connecticut elementary school students taught about transgenderism, 'social justice standards'

The document outlines reading materials for kindergarten through fifth grade that fit into four social justice standards: Identity, Diversity, Justice, and Action.

Hannah Nightingale Washington DC

Elementary school students in West Hartford, Connecticut, public schools are reportedly forced to learn about transgenderism, gender identity, and "social justice standards" via "social emotional learning through an equity lens," with parents unable to opt-out of the controversial curriculum.

Parents of students in the district contacted the non-profit Parents Defending Education, which has been vocal against social justice and critical race theory teachings in schools, to express their concerns regarding the materials being used to teach young children these topics.

One parent expressed concern about the book When Aidan Became a Brother, which is about a young transgender boy. "When Aidan was born, everyone thought he was a girl. His parents gave him a pretty name, his room looked like a girl's room, and he wore clothes that other girls liked wearing," the description of the book reads. "After he realized he was a trans boy, Aidan and his parents fixed the parts of his life that didn't fit anymore, and he settled happily into his new life."

"Then mom and dad announce that they're going to have another baby, and Aidan wants to do everything he can to make things right for his new sibling from the beginning — from choosing the perfect name to creating a beautiful room to picking out the cutest onesie," it continues.

The book asks "but what does 'making things right' actually mean?"

One parent said, "I am troubled by When Aidan Became a Brother (4th grade) which is full on gender theory, that the sex you're assigned at birth is 'wrong' and you're actually a boy. This is being presented as factual to very young children."

The document outlines reading materials for kindergarten through fifth grade that fit into four social justice standards: Identity, Diversity, Justice, and Action.

The identity standard teaches children about topics including gender identities, transgenderism, and race.

Parents have told Parents Defending Education that they are unable to opt out of the subject matter.

In an Oct. 14 email from the school district's Director of Equity Advancement Dr. Roszena Haskins, she stated that the district has "redoubled district-wide efforts to attend to the social and emotional needs of children and adults."

"CASEL [Collaborative for Academic, Social and Emotional Learning] acknowledges that 'While SEL alone will not solve longstanding and deep-seated inequities in the education system, it can help schools to promote understanding, examine biases, reflect on and address the impact of racism…close opportunity gaps and create a more inclusive school community,'" wrote Haskins.

"Essentially, SEL provides students with understandings and skills that they need to increase their social consciousness and act in ways that foster respect, empathy, fairness, and universal humanity. SEL instruction sits at the cross-section of prosocial education that fosters safe, positive, inclusive, equitable and supportive learning environments," she continued.

"WHPS teaches SEL through an equity lens, adapted from the Learning for Justice social justice and anti-bias framework," the email adds.


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