EDUCATION + SCHOOLS

Park City School District gets pushback over new curriculum

Oct 16, 2019, 7:04 PM | Updated: 7:38 pm
BYU students LGBTQ...
The Department of Public Safety reports there were 134 hate crimes committed last year. Many of those came against members of the LGTBQ community. (Stock Photo)
(Stock Photo)

PARK CITY – A new sex education and anti-bullying curriculum in one elementary school in the Park City district has parents upset.  They’ve lawyered up, and sent a cease and desist letter to the school and the district superintendent.

The program is called “Welcoming Schools” and it’s designed to teach kids about the differences some kids may face.  Some come from lower-income homes.  Others have to overcome language barriers.  Others may feel same-sex attraction or face issues about their gender identity.  The program has books that are geared toward kids from pre-K to the fifth grade, many of them talk about accepting kids with differences.

Park City School District Spokesperson Melinda Colton says they have children who are part of the LGBTQ community, even at a young age.

“We are seeing that in our classrooms at the elementary level.  We’re looking at ways to simply arm teachers with appropriate ways to address learning for all kids,” Colton says.

However, a group of parents called “Stop Welcoming Schools – Utah” issued a press release announcing they delivered a cease and desist letter to Trailside Elementary and to the school district.  They say they’re not anti-LGBTQ, but they believe the program is not just an anti-bullying program.  The group claims the program violates state law about getting a parent’s consent before teaching classes on sexuality.  Plus, they believe there are books within the program that teach political doctrine about the LGBTQ community.

Colton says parents who have concerns are welcome to speak with the district about it.

She says, “If we thought one parent that isn’t happy about it, that’s something we could look at and we could decide whether or not it’s appropriate for this age group.”

However, she believes the cease and desist letter was unnecessary.  The district is giving instructions to teachers about the program, but, they’ve decided to wait to implement it until they’ve studied it more.

“We’ve hit pause.  We’re looking at it to see what teachers think, and then, we’ll take it from there,” she adds.

Colton says the program isn’t mandated by the state, and if they do decide to implement it, not all books would be required reading.

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Send it to the KSL NewsRadio team here.

Today’s Top Stories

Education + Schools

One of the topics being discussed during the 2023 Utah Legislative Session is how to combat the tea...
Mark Jones

Bill would allow individuals to become teachers without a bachelor’s degree

A bill being discussed on in the legislative session would allow for individuals to become teachers without obtaining a bachelor's degree.
1 day ago
Computer systems in the Alpine School District are being investigated after the district's technolo...
Adam Small

Alpine schools investigating “suspicious” computer activity

The issue involves the Alpine district's computer software. On Tuesday, the district said they noticed suspicious activity.
1 day ago
snow shovel driveway dialysis...
Mark Jones

Cold weather causes late start for Logan City School District Wednesday

The Logan City School District and the Cache County School District will be on two-hour late starts on Wednesday, Feb. 1.
2 days ago
A bill working its way through the Utah Legislature could open the door for online, private, charte...
Adam Small

Non-public-school students could more easily play sports under a new bill

Bill sponsor, Rep. Jordan Teuscher, R-South Jordan, said the bill would level the playing field for some students.
2 days ago
A group of students at the Jean Massieu School of the Deaf is making blankets for pet dogs and cats...
Allie Litzinger

Students making pet blankets to donate to the Humane Society of Utah

The Kindness Club at Jean Massieu School of the Deaf is making blankets for pet dogs and cats at the Humane Society of Utah.
2 days ago
education legislation...
Mark Jones

One Utah lawmaker wants to ban cellphones in classrooms

One Utah lawmaker wants to ban cellphones in Utah classrooms.
3 days ago

Sponsored Articles

Banner with Cervical Cancer Awareness Realistic Ribbon...
Intermountain Health

Five Common Causes of Cervical Cancer – and What You Can Do to Lower Your Risk

January is National Cervical Cancer Awareness month and cancer experts at Intermountain Health are working to educate women about cervical cancer, the tests that can warn women about potential cancer, and the importance of vaccination.
Kid holding a cisco fish at winterfest...
Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

Get Ready for Fun at the 2023 Bear Lake Monster Winterfest

The Bear Lake Monster Winterfest is an annual weekend event jam-packed full of fun activities the whole family can enjoy. This year the event will be held from January 27-29 at the Utah Bear Lake State Park Marina and Sunrise Resort and Event Center in Garden City, Utah. 
happy friends with sparklers at christmas dinner...
Macey's

15 Easy Christmas Dinner Ideas

We’ve scoured the web for you and narrowed down a few of our favorite Christmas dinner ideas to make your planning easy. Choose from the dishes we’ve highlighted to plan your meal or start brainstorming your own meal plan a couple of weeks before to make sure you have time to shop and prepare.
Spicy Homemade Loaded Taters Tots...
Macey's

5 Game Day Snacks for the Whole Family (with recipes!)

Try these game day snacks to make watching football at home with your family feel like a special occasion. 
Happy joyful smiling casual satisfied woman learning and communicates in sign language online using...
Sorenson

The Best Tools for Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing Workplace Success

Here are some of the best resources to make your workplace work better for Deaf and hard-of-hearing employees.
Team supporters celebrating at a tailgate party...
Macey's

8 Delicious Tailgate Foods That Require Zero Prep Work

In a hurry? These 8 tailgate foods take zero prep work, so you can fuel up and get back to what matters most: getting hyped for your favorite
Park City School District gets pushback over new curriculum