The following is my own stance as a board member, and I am not representing the School Board as a whole.
As a school board member, I want to speak up about the recent letter to the editor by Valerie Fox. I have read the comments and her letter. Valerie Fox has the right to speak up and express her feelings on this topic just as everyone has the right to respond. But today I want to remind everyone that the public school system exists to educate ALL students. And it is my firm belief that as a board member we also need to protect that privilege. Every child in our schools should feel safe to be at school and to learn, to feel acknowledged and respected.
Although I respect Ms. Fox’s right to express herself, I do not condone her disparaging remarks against members of our community, including staff and students. Schools are a place of inclusivity, and that includes LBGTQ people. It also includes people who feel as Valerie does. However, it must be understood by all, that our children get to feel included and accepted. The schools provide books of all types, but they are not propaganda, they are legitimate learning resources…not designed to teach any certain viewpoint or to push any agenda. Books are written with unique characters with differing lifestyles so that any student can feel connected or relevant. Our teachers are professionals doing their best to help all children learn in a safe and accepting environment. I also want to make it clear that LBGTQ is not a curriculum. It is an acronym. Curriculum is a map or a path towards achieving standards linked to content areas. It is the way to get to the end, which is the state standards. There is no state or common core standard that is called LBGTQ.
There will be no discrimination on my watch. Not against any LBGTQ or against Valerie Fox’s child. I will make this clear, ALL children are accepted, get to celebrate who they are and be recognized. This is a public school, and it is an education for all.
Los Alamos Public Schools Board