The California State Legislature recently passed the Fair, Accurate, Inclusive and Respectful (FAIR) Education Act, which was signed into law by Governor Jerry Brown on July 13, 2011. This landmark bill requires public schools to recognize the societal contributions and historical roles of minority groups, including LGBT individuals.
The conservative Capitol Resource Institute is gathering signatures for a ballot initiative to challenge the FAIR Education Act. They claim that the bill requires public schools to “teach provocative material” and “use all social science curriculum … to teach children as young as five not only to accept but also to endorse transgenderism, bisexuality, and homosexuality.”
Why is the FAIR Education Act Important?
Out & Equal supports the FAIR Education Act because it requires public schools to recognize the achievements and societal contributions of LGBT individuals. This important bill creates a more accepting educational environment for LGBT students and improves their education. LGBT students can be proud of the accomplishments of their predecessors and realize their own potential for the future.
An inclusive learning environment engages LGBT students in the learning process and provides them with the tools they need to lead successful lives as adults. The FAIR Education Act supports this inclusion and encourages LGBT students to stay in school, which makes them better future employees. Furthermore, this important bill fosters understanding among straight students and teachers for our LGBT children, and therefore reduces bullying of LGBT students.
How can you take action?
Learn about LGBT history
Identify potential straight allies and reach out to your straight friends and family members to explain to them why LGBT inclusion is important.
Support initiatives to include LGBT individuals and create a safe environment by writing to your elected officials. Locate contact information for State Legislators here and your local city and county officials here.
If you are not in California, visit the Equality Federation to find your local LGBT advocacy group.