Democratic New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy has responded to public outrage about gender identity lesson plans for first and second graders by admitting that some of the material is not “age-appropriate.” Murphy still declared that those teaching materials only represent a “handful” of the gender-related plans in place in the state.
Parents in Westfield, New Jersey, first expressed alarm when they received materials at a school board meeting that were said to be part of the new gender identity educational standards for second graders. The materials included “performance expectations” about how people express their preferred genders and how societal stereotypes affect them.
Another lesson plan for first graders instructs them to define “gender identity” and “gender role stereotypes.” They are also asked to name at least two things they have been taught about how stereotypes limit people in their gender expressions.
The plan also tells first graders they may “feel like a boy” even if their body parts are ones people may tell them are “girl parts.” The same thing was presented to boys who may feel like girls despite their “boy parts.” The plan said that it is even “perfectly normal” to feel “a little bit of both.”
Teachers in the second grade were instructed by another lesson plan to instruct students that “being a boy or a girl” doesn’t mean they have to have certain types of body parts. The second graders are also to be instructed to “identify at least four body parts” from the genitalia of both sexes.
A district spokesperson told Fox News that the district had not actually intended to put those lesson plans in place. They were described as being part of a “sample list” that would comply with the state Student Learning Standards to be considered as part of the revisions to health and PE teaching materials.
Murphy initially attempted to dismiss the controversy over the lesson plans by declaring they were “not new.” Eventually, his office issued a statement saying that the circulated plans “do not accurately reflect the spirit of the standards.” The statement said that he was requesting that the questionable plans not be used by any school district in the state.