Ryan Middle School provided resources that encouraged students to question their sexual orientation and gender identity
- Sex and Gender
On October 13, 2022, the news outlet Alaska Watchman reported that the website for Ryan Middle School promoted resources to “encourage youth to question and explore their sexual orientation, gender identity and how to engage in various sexual acts, while directing kids with sexual questions to speak confidentially to school counselors.” The school appears to have taken the page with the resources down. However, an archived version of the page was saved on the Wayback Machine.
The page was titled “LGBT Support” and told students “don’t hesitate to talk to the counselors about sexual orientation concerns, questions, or needed support.” The page provided links to organizations that are known to target children with LGBTQ issues. Some of the organizations promoted were “GLSEN,” “It Gets Better Project,” “GLAAD,” and “The Trevor Project.” One resource on the page is labeled “Am I a Lesbian?” The page then explained that this resource provided “information on learning you’re bisexual or lesbian, coming out and talking to parents.”
Alaska Watchman explained that one resource on the page linked to a website that “helps students discover whether they are gay, lesbian or bisexual, while providing explicit details on how to have anal and oral sex.” The news outlet continued to explain that this resource also included “first time sex stories” and “tells students how to prevent pregnancy through pulling out, abortion and the morning after pill, among other options.”
The organization GLSEN is known for promoting LGBTQ issues to young children. GLSEN states on its website that “while many LGBTQ+-inclusive school supports begin in middle or high school, it is critical for elementary schools to establish a foundation of respect and understanding for all people.” The organization has also appeared to show support for children taking “hormone replacement therapy” to transition to another gender:
Upon birth, we are typically categorized into one of two genders (boy or girl) depending on how our genitals are read. Throughout our lives, however, our many bodily characteristics work together to create a unique path of development, causing some of us to grow really tall, and others to remain short, or some of us to grow hair under our armpits and legs, while others remain bare. While this development often happens on its own during puberty, this change can also be administered through medicine, such as hormone replacement therapy. Since our society often conflates our bodies (or genitalia) with our gender identity, it is critical that we allow space for people to self-identify.
The “It Gets Better Project” is an organization known for promoting LGBTQ issues to children. The organization states that its mission is “to uplift, empower, and connect lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ+) youth around the globe.” This includes through “storytelling and media.” The organization explains: “We work in all forms of media to bring messages of hope to LGBTQ+ youth, spark conversations about the challenges they confront, and inform and positively influence their sexual orientation and gender identity journey.”