The Battle Ground School District, like all districts across Washington State, is starting the process of choosing curriculum to meet the State mandated Comprehensive Sex Ed signed into law by Gov. Inslee as passed by the State Legislature. (It’s worth noting that this was a partyline vote. Democrats all voted yes). As such BGSD created a team of 20 people from about 100 applicants to review selected curriculum. The Directors of Curriculum gave an online presentation. You may want to view it before proceeding with the rest of this article so you understand what they shared: https://youtu.be/sjev3ZACGlA
It’s worth a couple of minutes to delve into the composition of the public group that provided feedback to the district. In this article: http://www.swweducation.org/?p=6971 we reviewed the information about the respondents responses to a series of questions obtained under a Public Record Request to the district. What did we learn at a high level? The group of people chosen do not represent the demographics of residents of the battle ground school district. As such their recommendation on curriculum may not represent the residents of the district. It’s also important to understand that there were four (4) sets of curriculum but that only two (2) got any detailed look.
The district agreed to allow some time for interested parties to either go to the district office and review hard copies of the proposed materials or to access them online. I chose to use the online option. The access is closing on June 25th because the first reading (of 2 readings) will be done by the school board directors on June 28th. Here is a link to the district page where access was obtained if you knew where to look. I say that because it was somewhat hidden and not easy to find. Link: https://www.battlegroundps.org/curriculum-adoption/?fbclid=IwAR12AipXZRoGlyt6lnwuBOT8BFqbLRjtLbGQRC53CS0poMPkfJvRvsNdOlM
There were a total of seven (7) modules. One for 5th grade only and six (6) for Middle School students. In the limited amount of time available I was able to review the 5th grade and three (3) of the Middle School modules. I emailed the School Board President suggesting that more time was needed to review the materials. There was no extension. It’s worth noting that most of the teacher modules were around 270 pages and there was a student workbook set of materials that ran north of 50 pages. All told, if you had time to review everything, it was over 2,200 pages. I simply didn’t have time and only got through about 1,400 pages.
So what did I see? I took notes on each module. I typed those up for each. I then wrote a summary document. Almost every document is 1 page. I tried to keep it short and to the point and provide lesson #’s, Page #’s, topics and specific details. My hope was that keeping the notes short increases the possibility they would be read. I emailed the document to each school board director as well as the two (2) Directors of Curriculum and the new Superintendent.
Here are the documents in PDF format (so you will need the Adobe Acrobat Reader or some other way to open the documents). There is still time to email your thoughts or you can sign up to testify on Monday evening June 28th by going to the district website. Contact the Admin Assistant for the Superintendent.
Without further ado here are the documents I submitted:
Summary Overview: BGSD_ETR_Curriculum_Review_Summary_Rylander
Grade 5 module: ETR Review – Grade 5 – June 22 2021 – Rylander
Emotional and Mental Health module: BGSD Middle School Emotional and Mental Health Instructors Guide
BGSD Middle School ETR – HIV, STI & Pregnancy Module Notes: BGSD Middle School ETR HIV_STI_Pregnancy_Notes_Rylander
Abstinence, Puberty & Personal Health Notes: BGSD Middel School Teachers Guide Abstinance_Puberty_Personal Health_Review_Rylander
That’s what I could put together on short notice. If you have other materials you would like added to the article please contact us. To be complete and transparent parents can Opt-Out their student for one or all of the modules. You just need to be aware and keep an eye out for the letter your student is supposed to bring home. Be diligent. Any comments let us know.