Thursday, June 22, 2006

Official claims father's view of gay rights not cause of fight

The saga continues about a father who wanted to "opt out" of alternative lifestyle instruction at a Lexington, Massachusetts, elementary school. The problem surfaced last year when a teacher at Joseph Estabrook Elementary School decided to have second graders read a “fairy-tale” about two princes involved in a homosexual lifestyle, “King and King." Several parents objected to alternative lifestyle instruction and requested to "opt out" of alternative lifestyle instruction.

The school district was cool to their request and later refused to allow the "opt out" solution. The father eventually was arrested when he failed to leave a school board meeting. The charges were later dropped. Talk show host and columnist, Kevin McCullough, also wrote about the parents' saga in his column at World Net Daily, School superintendent: OK to ignore parents.

In April of this year, four of the parents filed a federal civil rights suit against the school district claiming that the district interfered with their Fourteenth Amendment due process rights to direct the moral upbringing of their own children.

Weeks after the civil rights suit was filed, an alleged assault took place against the father's 7 year old child on the playground of the child's school. McCullough, picked up the story again and wrote about his perception of the events in his column in TownHall, "Libs’ new strategy: Assault 7 year old ." McCullough was critical of Lexington School District and the way the district handled the alleged assault.

According to a news story filed on June 20th, by Globe Staff reporter, Maria Sacchetti, Official says father's view on gays didn't spark fight, law enforcement declined to investigate the assault incident because the 7 year old’s father did not file a police report. Sacchetti claims that the father did not want the children involved in the alleged assault to be investigated because he didn’t want to vilify the children. The father indicated that he would like all involved to get along regardless of their beliefs.

According to Sacchetti, the school superintendent’s position remains firm that the children involved where squabbling on a playground because of a lunchroom disagreement and that, “Some adults are (now) exploiting these children for political purposes.”

The activist group, MassResistance, who the superintendent appears to be talking about (as the adults exploiting the children for political purposes) believes that the 7 year old was beaten up on a playground last month in retaliation for his father's campaign to stop the school from teaching his son about alternative lifestyles. That charge has not been substantiated by anyone involved in the case.

Because this story has many turns and twists who knows were it is going. The real problem appears to center on the schools insistence to not honor the parents request to "opting out" of controversial subjects.

For additional information on the case, The Boston Globe has an informative article published on April 20, 2006, Parents rip school over gay storybook Lesson reignites clash in Lexington. That article provides some background regarding the controversy.

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