FCPS

LGBTQ+ Students, Allies Rally for Changes in FCPS Curriculum

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Following the Supreme Court decision overturning Roe v. Wade, a group of LGBTQ+ students is asking the Fairfax County School Board to adopt more inclusive family life education curriculum.

Members of the Pride Liberation Project, Fairfax County NAACP and FCPS Pride rallied in front of the school board meeting Thursday evening, demanding school leaders change current family life education (FLE) – the county’s version of sex ed.

“We know that FLE is so important to reproductive health, and obviously after the overturn of Roe v. Wade, it’s more important that we actually have respectful conversations about reproductive health,” said Aaryan Rawal, former president of Pride Liberation Project.

Rawal, a recent graduate who is heading to Harvard in the fall, said he owes it to other marginalized students to speak up and push FCPS to adopt inclusive curriculum.

“It’s not just about sex. It’s about everything from STIs to drugs and alcohol to risky behavior, so it really is this life course that we’re taught in Fairfax County,” he said. “Unfortunately, queer people just are not represented in that course.”

They’re calling for contraceptive access programs at all secondary schools and education about prep and Plan B.

Recently, an independent panel recommended several changes to the county curriculum that deals with topics like dating, puberty, sex education and violence, but the board has been slow to act, and currently many of those courses are separated by gender.

“Obviously, if you are a nonbinary student, if you are a closeted transgender student, it becomes a very uncomfortable position when you’re asked to choose,” Rawal said.

That’s why the students are speaking out and making sure school leaders hear what they have to say.

“Many of these students are not typically heard students like white cisgender students,” FCPS Pride Co-Chair Robert Rigby Jr. said. “These are the unheard voices, and they should be heard.”

Those students would like to see the recommendations adopted before the beginning of the next school year.

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