DAYTON — A committee will be formed in accordance with state law within the month to begin work on crafting a sex education curriculum for the Lyon County School District, according to a motion passed Tuesday at the school board meeting.
“The board is the responsible body to approve the curriculum once the committee has done its work,” said board president John Stevens, who made the motion, which was unanimously approved.
The district came under fire earlier this month when the American Civil Liberties Union of Nevada requested information about the proposed sex education curriculum in Lyon County.
“The Lyon County School District received information that promotes opinions, rather than facts, beliefs rather than science. Students should be taught facts in school, and parents are free to teach their beliefs at home. We implore the Lyon County school board members to reject this information and start over,” Tod Story, executive director of the ACLU of Nevada, told the Associated Press.
In April 2008, the Lyon County School District Board of Trustees adopted a Human Development/Sexual Education Curriculum which included themes such as “Homosexuality shall not be presented as an acceptable lifestyle” and “Girls are the object of pornography addiction.” The curriculum also promoted the concept of “second virginity.”
Trustee Maureen Williss said she was on the board in 2008 and disagreed with the curriculum at that time.
“I voted against it,” she said. “I don’t believe in secondary virginity. I think it’s completely incorrect.”
She cautioned the board look for objective voices to serve on the committee to draft the curriculum.
“They have to have an open mind,” she said.
The district drafted a new policy to include updated language such as, “Although homosexual behavior is not promoted; if a student initiates the discussion the teacher will provide information of a factual nature only and avoid introducing the discussion of homosexual behavior, except as is necessary to aid student understanding of sexually transmitted diseases.” However, the board voted down that policy in favor of forming a committee to craft a new curriculum entirely.
According to Nevada law, the committee must consist of five parents along with representatives from the medical field, counseling, religion, students and/or teachers.
The district’s current policy was created in 1989 and updated intermittently since then, the last time in 2008.
In his motion, Stevens directed the committee be presented to the board at its September meeting.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.