Strong Emotions Expressed During Frederick County School Board Meeting

Citizens testified about curriculum guidelines regarding family life and human sexuality.







Frederick, Md (KM) There were some strong emotions expressed during Wednesday’s Frederick County Board of Education meeting regarding state guidelines on family life and human sexuality instruction. It’s  supposed to represent students regardless of ability, sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression.

Opponents, such as kindergarten teacher Ryan Jayco,k said this curriculum is not age appropriate. “I teach kindergarten students that cannot identify where their shoulder is located. But Frederick County thinks it’s appropriate for five-year-olds to recognize a range of  ways people identify and express their gender,” he said. “Certainly, an important topic, not age appropriate.”

The Board also heard from Jennifer Tool, a transgender woman whose a member of the Board of Directors for the Frederick Center, an LGBTQ rights organization. . “We will not go back into closet. Who we are is not age inappropriate,” she said. “And our rights as LGBTQ+ Fredericktonians, Marylanders and Americans  cannot, will not and shall not be denied to our children.”

Jennifer Stonesifer said these guidelines are a way to groom children for sexual activity. “I need you to understand that I’m not trying to be homophobic or transphobic. But I’d rather to be labeled homophobic or transphobic than a sexual groomer,” she said.

During parts of the meeting, several members of the audience tried to shout down some of the speakers. Richard “Kap” Kaplowitz, with Jews United for Justice, called  those trying to shout him down as “liar” and “hypocrite” as President Brad Young worked to restore order.

Kaplowitz took issue with opponents who say these guidelines will groom kids for  sexual activity. “The teachers are not going to groom your kids. That’s a big lie. The teachers are not preparing your children to learn about anal sex. That’s a big lie. You need to stop listening to liars who are manipulating you for political purposes. You are being manipulated,” he said.

Kris Fair, the Executive Director of the Frederick Center, spoke about a sermon he heard describing Jesus’ journey into Jerusalem, with an audience member shouting him down. “He didn’t come into Jerusalem with might. He modeled a triumphant power that come from love peace and justice, and he invited others  along on that journey,”: he said.

Board of Education President Brad Young tried  to intervene. “We’re going to listen to our speakers and show respect. I’ve asked three times, and the next time there’s an outbreak {during that time, someone interrupted} Sir, can you asked this gentleman to leave?  I’ve  asked four times,” he says.

Despite the strong emotions, the School Board did get through its agenda.



By Kevin McManus