Sex Ed in NYC Schools Call for Response, Not Reaction from Christians

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Sex Ed in NYC Schools Call for Response, Not Reaction from Christians

Recently the New York Post broke a story that revealed the content of a newly mandated Sex Education Program for New York City junior and senior high schools. If the New York Post is accurately depicting this curriculum (the NYC Board of Education says they are not,) then this is an unprecedented program that is more graphic than American Schools have ever seen before. Right now it’s a “He said, she said” game between the Post and the School Board, but it has sparked a debate that is worth looking into, especially among the Christian community. As I have read through message boards and the comments sections of these articles, the reaction has been, “It’s time to homeschool our kids!” There is much fear and outrage over what is seen as an effort to push an agenda of sexual promiscuity onto children. There still seems to be some conflicting reports over what is and is not included in this curriculum, but regardless, it is the commentary and debate surrounding it in Christian circles that concerns me the most. As a mom whose own children are on the cusp of tween and teendom, I humbly offer these three thoughts. 1.)   Sex Education exists because parents weren’t talking to their kids about sex at home. Educators saw a gap in a very important aspect of child development, namely the knowledge of anatomy, procreation, puberty and sexuality, and they attempted to fill it. We can debate till we are blue in the face whether they have taught our children according to our value system, but the fact remains that parents created the necessity of sex education because of a collective lack of parenting. As parents, especially as Christian parents, the responsibility falls squarely on us to teach our children about sex and to teach them about what the bible has to say about sex. It’s also our job to acknowledge the fact that we live in a fallen culture and to prepare our kids to encounter sexual information and behaviors that do not fall in line with what we believe. The fallen culture only has power over our kids if they buy into it. And they need to know the truth first so that they are not shackled by falsehood. “Believe therefore in the truth, and the truth will set you free!” John 8:32   Truth illuminates falsehood. When our kids have the truth, they quickly learn to identify lies and deception. 2.) Respond, don’t react when a fallen culture acts fallen. As Christians, we have the spirit of the Living God within us, and yet we still sin. Why then does it consistently shock us when our culture plays out its Godless nature. We need to expect it. How can we be the salt of the earth and the light of the world if we react by retreating and withdrawing from the culture.  I mentioned that one of the main things I was consistently hearing in the forums and comments sections was that Christians ought to withdraw their kids from public schools and homeschool them or put them in private schools.  Hear me clearly: I think all schooling options have both positive and negative aspects. I think every family should make the best schooling choice for their family after much prayer. But to simply see something within the public school system that we disagree with and then to react by withdrawing ourselves and our kids just abandons the culture we are called to redeem. If the light bearers abandon the people who walk in darkness, who will light their way? 3.) When you engage the culture, practice diplomacy. When we allow the shrill, vitriolic voices to frame our point of view, we don’t make much headway with the culture we are called to inform.  A diplomat must gain the trust and respect of cultures, often hostile cultures, in order to make headway in promoting his goals. A diplomat is no pushover. He doesn’t surrender his values to a hostile environment, but he knows that he will catch more flies with honey than with vinegar. The way we approach the brokenness of our culture shapes our witness. A hungry world is always watching us. We need to show them Whose we are. We absolutely can come to school board meetings and voice our concern. We absolutely can vote for school board members who we feel can make the best decisions in the education of our children, but we must first remember to treat those we disagree with as the intrinsically valuable beings they are. Jesus died for all mankind. All humans are equally valuable to God. Regardless of how this all plays out in the New York City schools, debates like this give the secular world a collective look at the Christian heart. What do we want them to see? ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… Karis Murray is a Scottsdale, Arizona native, wife to Mike and mother to daughters Riley, age 8 and Lydia, age 6. She is currently the Creative Director for the Family Matters Minute Radio Show and serves as Lead Writer and Editor for the show. She and Steph Flies co-manage the Family Matters Blog. Karis is a writer for Scottsdale Mom’s Blog, where she shares her experiences as a mom with irreverent humor. For her unfiltered and uncensored musings, visit her at her blog Candid Motherhood.

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