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Representatives call for removal of gender identity resources on webpage

State Rep. Joe Hamm, R-Hepburn Township, and state Rep. Stephanie Borowicz, R-McElhattan, are joining other Republican lawmakers in calling for the removal of a gender/gender identity resource page from the Department of Education’s website.

Borowicz and other lawmakers have called the resource page — https://www.education.pa.gov/EIB/Gender-GenderIdentity/Pages/default.aspx — “gender theory student indoctrination” and demand acting Pennsylvania Education Secretary Eric Hagarty remove the page or resign.

“The PA Department of Education and all K-12 public school faculty and administrators have an obligation to educate, not indoctrinate,” said Borowicz, according to a news release. “For the sake of our children, Pennsylvania’s acting education secretary needs to either actively remove all traces of gender theory indoctrination currently plastered throughout the department’s website/curriculum or immediately submit his resignation. This is precisely why the Legislature needs to enact an enforceable Parental Bill of Rights so families can freely direct the upbringing of their children without inappropriate sexual content or demoralizing, gender-neutral pronouns invading our taxpayer-funded classrooms.”

The education department’s gender identity web page also includes a lesson guide for teachers to host a “gender-neutral day” in their classrooms for grades 3-12, the news release from the state Republican Party said. Another section on the education department website, titled “Creating Gender-Inclusive Schools and Classrooms,” includes a tutorial on “preferred gender-neutral personal pronouns” and instructs teachers to ask before making false assumptions about someone’s gender identity.

“This is only the latest example of why record numbers of families are choosing educational options that give parents direct oversight over their child’s education such as homeschool, charter school or private school,” said state Rep. David Rowe, R-East Buffalo Township, according to the news release. “Education dollars should follow the student, ensuring that every child has access to an excellent education rather than using taxpayer dollars to subject 8-year-olds to indoctrination by progressive bureaucrats who have infiltrated government-run schools. Maybe if Tom Wolf and the State Department of Education stopped wasting our tax dollars pedaling nonsensical, woke rhetoric to impressionable third-graders, they would not need to keep coming back to the General Assembly to beg for astronomical school funding increases, year after year.”

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends “that youth who identify as [transgender and gender-diverse] have access to comprehensive, gender-affirming, and developmentally appropriate health care that is provided in a safe and inclusive clinical space” and “that pediatricians have a role in advocating for, educating, and developing liaison relationships with school districts and other community organizations to promote acceptance and inclusion of all children without fear of harassment, exclusion, or bullying because of gender expression,” according to a policy statement released in 2018.

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