News & Politics

California school bans sixth grader’s Harvey Milk presentation

A San Diego-area sixth-grader’s report on Harvey Milk was not welcomed by the school’s principal, the L.A. Times reports:

“Instead, the principal sent letters to parents giving them the option of not allowing their child to listen to the presentation by classmate Natalie Jones. Officials cited the district policy requiring that parents be notified before any classroom instruction about sex, AIDS or ‘family life.’ About half the class received permission and listened to the report, which was given during lunch hour rather than regular classroom time like other students’ reports, the ACLU said…The ACLU of San Diego and Imperial counties asserts that officials misinterpreted the district’s policy on sex education and, in the process, violated Natalie’s free speech rights. The group has given the Ramona Unified School District five days to respond or face a possible lawsuit.”

Jones’ mother: “This whole thing is unbelievable – first my daughter got called into the principal’s office as if she were in some kind of trouble, and then they treated her presentation like it was something icky. Harvey Milk was an elected official in this state and an important person in history. To say my daughter’s presentation is ‘sex education’ because Harvey Milk happened to be gay is completely wrong.”

The student learned of Milk after seeing the 2008 film about the slain hero.