School board should reconsider

2010-07-12T00:00:00Z School board should reconsiderRick DeMato, Letter to the editor Helena Independent Record
July 12, 2010 12:00 am  • 

Most Christians who believe the Bible is correct in its teachings do not feel comfortable with the health draft being proposed.

I preached a sermon on a recent Sunday entitled “Has the Helena Public School System Gone Too Far?” It can be heard on

I do not consider the public school to be an enemy, I simply have a problem when it does not regard the convictions of the Christian element in Helena. There is an element of homosexuality and very graphic language that most Christians consider inappropriate for elementary children. We feel this teaching shows the public school has no regard for our values. This is the reason many folks are pulling their children from the public system.

With 40 millions children eliminated from public school through abortion and the rapid growth of “home schools” and “Christian schools” in America and Helena I would think the board would reconsider its direction. See you

the 13th.

Rick DeMato

Liberty Baptist Church


Copyright 2016 Helena Independent Record. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

(35) Comments

  1. ShaunnaMichelle
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    ShaunnaMichelle - July 20, 2010 12:17 am
    Curmudgeon said: ""The voice of the majority is no proof of justice." - Friedrich Schiller."

    How appropriate...A German Dramatist. Which is just what the proponents of this curriculum are being...dramatic. A few slightly skewed statistics and "the sky is falling" so we must "educate" the masses on the mistakes of the few.
  2. Curmudgeon
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    Curmudgeon - July 19, 2010 1:30 pm
    "The voice of the majority is no proof of justice." - Friedrich Schiller.
  3. ShaunnaMichelle
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    ShaunnaMichelle - July 15, 2010 1:45 pm
    Curmudgeon said: "VENGEANCE IS MINE sayeth ShaunaMichelle. I guess if you can't get your own way thru reasoned argument, debate and discussion, the next tactic is to start issuing threats. If the school board dares to vote for the proposed curriculum, she and the like-minded will remember it at the next election. Yeah, ShaunaMichelle, that's the democratic way, all right. That'll teach 'em a lesson!"

    I am not after vengeance. I am after justice. I do find it telling that when I verbalize my intention to exercise my rights as an American citizen, you criticize me for being threatening. However, when proponents of this curriculum are insulting the opponents, calling us homophobes, ignorant, "bass ackwards", etc you do not seem to have a problem with that. From what I can tell, opponents are having reasonable debate and discussion and in turn are being insulted in every way possible by proponents while being fed falsified statistics to make our stance seem trivial. I think that if me, and like-minded individuals, stand together against this curriculum you will find that we are in the majority. The majority of parents want to continue parenting their own children and not leave it to the schools. We should be heard.
  4. Curmudgeon
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    Curmudgeon - July 15, 2010 10:42 am
    VENGEANCE IS MINE sayeth ShaunaMichelle. I guess if you can't get your own way thru reasoned argument, debate and discussion, the next tactic is to start issuing threats. If the school board dares to vote for the proposed curriculum, she and the like-minded will remember it at the next election. Yeah, ShaunaMichelle, that's the democratic way, all right. That'll teach 'em a lesson!
  5. dolphind3
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    dolphind3 - July 14, 2010 11:37 pm
    Well said thingsthatneedtobedone; Gun why do you make comments like I am teaching my children to hate and am warping their minds. Your right I don't know you but you seem to forget that you don't know me, or maybe we do and just don't know it. Both of my kids are respectful and are well raised, we hear the compliments all the time.The compliments don't matter to me though. I can say the same to you, just because you believe yourself to be a good parent doesn't make you a good parent, and abdicating your parental resposnsibilities doesn't make you a good one for sure. I for one will never give up my rights as a parent. My parents raised all of my brothers and me the same and not all of us made good decisions in life. We made personal choices. Do you understand that? My parents did their duty and taught them right from wrong and they chose wrong. Just because there are kids out there making poor choices doesn't mean there are that many parents skipping out. Now there are some not so good parents as you don't need a license to have children but you can't paint everything with a broad brush and say that most don't parent. If a child doesn't want to ask their parent a question then I would say there is a communication problem in that relationship. You can't fix that gun.
    I am only as me me me as you are, that is the main thing you talk about is how great and well educated you are. My dad used to say if someone has to point out how great they are, they are probaly not that great.
    In closing you said it yourself, a person can love a person of the same gender. Hello..... That is saying it is ok to a child, you have to be very specific with a child that is why you have to watch what you say and why it is important that they are taught things at age appropriate times so they can really understand what we are telling them.
  6. seabeesrule
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    seabeesrule - July 14, 2010 8:35 pm
    I was embarrased tonight watching the media talking about Helena,Montana being run by liberal left wingnuts and comparing us to SanFrancisco, saying they changed their minds about moving to Montana if things got too weird on the East Coast.They are too late,the goofies have already arrived.
  7. thingsthatneedtobedone
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    thingsthatneedtobedone - July 14, 2010 1:48 pm
    If you want to state something like "Kids in the SIXTH grade are penetrating all of those orifices with all of those objects" you should have something to back that up. I couldn't find it. Here is what I did find. Nationwide, 6.2% of high school students had had sexual intercourse for the first time before age 13. 6.2%....before the age of 13 according to Why are we basing decisions on the super minority. Since, we need to be more concerned with what's happening in Montana than in the whole nation, here are some statistics from one of the organizations that helped bring us this piece of trash proposal Montana ranks 47th in cases of HIV infection diagnosed in the U.S. among all age groups. In 2007, there were a total of 5 new cases of HIV infection diagnosed in Montana. Montana ranks 46th in reported cases of gonorrhea among young people ages 15–19 in the U.S., with an infection rate of 0.49 cases per 1,000 compared to the national rate of 4.52 cases per 1,000. Montana ranks 32nd in reported cases of Chlamydia among young people ages 15–19 in the U.S., with an infection rate of 16.49 cases per 1,000 compared to the national rate of 19.51 cases per 1,000. In 2008, there were a total of 1,111 cases of Chlamydia reported among young people ages 15–19 in Montana. Once again, why are we going to make policy based on the minority. This is not an epidemic as everyone in favor of it is trying to make it sound. Is there room for improvement in these numbers? Absolutely. Is this the way to make it happen? No. Telling parents that are not in favor of the curriculum to take their child out of school is idiotic. Quit saying are making yourself sound like a child. Parents have rights...get over it. Nothing is going to improve by making policy based on the minority. Are there parents who do not talk to their children about this stuff? yes. Gun961960 openly admits she would not want to have a sex talk. But that is her problem, not mine. Making new policy based on the minority of children will not fix a problem with the uninvolved parents.
  8. gun961960
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    gun961960 - July 14, 2010 1:47 pm
    Dolphin...I agree the Santa thing is funny, yet disturbing, because I have a feeling Shaunna isn't laughing? You have done nothing but me me me. My kids don't need to learn this, that is for my wife and myself to discuss. Read back your posts...A lot of me me me. Its your opinion sir, but I think YOU are in the minority. Most people see that we have a STD and Teenage pregnancy problem here and it is great that all these parents showed up along with me last night, but if you take into consideration the thousands of kids we have enrolled in our public school system, there wasn't even a small percentage of parents in attendance last night. I will say it again, I couldn't agree more that parents should be the ones teaching this to their kids, but the simple fact of the matter is that MOST are not and that fact combined with the fact that MOST kids are engaging in sexual behavior is a recipe for disaster as we can see in our STD and teenage pregnancy rates. I don't care what you think the IR has printed about it being OK for a man to love a man (and I doubt the IR printed that either). It simply isn't in the curriculum sir. It states that a human being can love a person of the opposite gender and a person of the same gender....WHICH I MIGHT ADD IS A FACT! From there you can teach your kids to hate all you want, nobody is taking away your right to warp the minds of your small children. I think we can all agree that bullying is wrong, no matter the specifics.
    I see that many of you are concerned, I think you are afraid of the boogy man that doesn't exist tho. I will post this website once again so you understand that most of the modernized world addressed sexual education in a different manner, one more aggressive and expansive than this proposed curriculum. The result as you can see for yourself is drastic. They do not suffer the same amounts of STDs or unwanted pregnancies and thus they also don't suffer the financial burden like we do....
    Oh and in my previous post I must of gotten ahead of myself. I meant to say they were saying that 40% of reported Chlamaydia or ghonorea (can't recall which) is from CHILDREN ages 14-18. If that isn't a public health problem than I don't know what is. 333 pregnancies from 06-08...YIKES. Dr. Rencher whom I like and take my kids to, I was disappointed to hear him dismiss these stats. I suppose if it was a dental stat he would of been singing a different toon? Just being under the national average should not be good enough ON ANY SUBJECT. Why do you think that all of our national averages are going down hill? Sure, blame it all on the teachers, when in fact it is the decline of PARENTING that is the real problem. Just because you believe yourself to be a good parent doesn't mean you really are. The proof is in the pudding. Oh and I can't resist the Bristol Palin comments. Ya she is on a abstinance campaign....WITH HER ONE YR OLD??? She isn't the only one in her family to make a mistake BTW...Her parents are the ones responsible for making her as ignorant as she was. If only abstinance only worked...dang it! I'm sure Sarah is loving the wedding announcement in the OK magazine too...LOL
  9. ShaunnaMichelle
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    ShaunnaMichelle - July 14, 2010 1:46 pm
    I am not going to continue arguing with you. I think most readers will find it telling enough that you resort to name calling and insinuations about others' parenting or children as your argument for this proposal. I'm in no way trying to tell you how to teach (or not teach) your children. I am simply demanding the right to teach my children as I see fit. This curriculum should not be forced on those parents who do not wish it be taught to their children. If you want your children to learn this material...feel free to allow it. Your opinion is no more important than mine though and I personally want a choice in the matter. Should the school board decide to pass this curriculum, I think the overwhelming support AGAINST this curriculum will be represented in the next vote for the members of the school board.
  10. dolphind3
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    dolphind3 - July 14, 2010 11:30 am
    Ok the Santa thing is funny. But I never said me me me. If you want to teach your children these things by all means do so. Some of these issues have no business in the public school system. You are in the minority on this localy and nationaly. there are only a few school systems doing this and Helena should not be one of them. Why do you think it is drawing such attention nationaly? Because it is out of the norm. As for the Man loving a man quote, it has only been printed as part of the proposal by this paper atleast six or seven times. Oh and don't flatter yourself, I don't care what you think, only when it comes to pushing an agenda on an unwilling public. I am not asking them to teach that homosexuality is wrong but I am also not asking for them to teach that it is ok. As for bullying, I am against all types of bullying, fat ,tall, zits or whatever.
  11. Purple
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    Purple - July 14, 2010 2:11 am
    chamules said: "What an embarrassment to the people of Helena to have this curriculum being proposed. Perhaps the school board should focus on teaching our children reading, writing, and arithmetic instead of this.......junk.......that is nothing more than a liberal agenda. Time to boot Messinger and the entire school board to the curb. And to those of you who insist that there is no God, I am praying that someday you will come to know Him. He is very real. "

    Wanna bet that the current crop of teachers DO NOT even know the basics they are SUPPOSED TO teach?

    On July 4th, a poll was conducted. The question which was asked was


    A whopping 26 percent of those responding to the poll DID NOT know that we gained our independence from England.

    How can teachers teach the RIGHT thing about sex education when they can't even educate our youth about such a simple basic fact about our independence?
  12. gun961960
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    gun961960 - July 14, 2010 12:35 am
    dolphin...I am sure your kids are fine and that you have sat down with them and given them all the information they will ever need to know. There, I have said it. I am not talking about YOUR KIDS. Once again, I will have to remind you that the world doesn't revolve around you and your kids and what you choose to tell your you you you. Where does it say, "it is OK for a man to love a man" in the curriculum. If you can show me where it says that I will let you win this argument. Where have I called names? This is the opinion section of the paper Dolphin, if you don't like my opinion that is fine, I DONT CARE. I disagree with you...that is fine. You don't even know me, why do you care so much what I think of you? I haven't made up anything...that I am leaving up to you and Shaunna...what is with this Santa thing? LOL
  13. gun961960
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    gun961960 - July 14, 2010 12:28 am

    Shaunna I am afraid that we are going round about over some simple word mis interpretations. See I asked you to show me where they were going to show the students HOW TO engage in such acts. You respond with, "sexual intercourse includes but is not limited to vaginal, oral, or anal penetration; using the penis, fingers, tongue or objects". The teacher isn't going to show them HOW TO penetrate those particular orfices with those particular objects, you do realize that don't you. This isn't a HOW TO course. And furthermore, what part of that quote is inaccurate? Kids in the SIXTH grade are penetrating all of those orfices with all of those objects you comprehend that FACT? I am sure your child wouldn't dream of doing anything like that...or mine?? Yeah right. Children not only have questions, but curiosity and if you think that your child is going to come to you and ask, I hope you are right, but I am afraid that you are mistaken. Not many kids want to discuss ANYTHING sexual with their parents. Not many kids want to ask ANY questions to any adult about sex. That is why we need this comprehensive sexual education provided to them in the safety of a classroom with professionals (who have college degrees, which is required to be a teacher in this state, sorry) who have been adequately trained on the subject matter. For heavens sake, say it isn't so. Do you see a doctor with a medical liscense Shaunna? You seem rather distrustful of your childrens teachers, I am sorry to hear that. I know all of my kids teachers and I have complete confidence in their abilities. I talk to my kids every single day about school and how their day went. I keep an open dialogue with them and hope that I have done enough so that if someone ever touched them inappropriately they would not only know it, but would be brave enough to tell me. I know of no teachers in our school system who have been charged with sexually abusing their students in the recent past. Not saying it can't happen, it can happen anywhere, but I think this curriculum helps to prevent abuse. Shaunna, have you ever been to an elementry school on the first day of school? It is utter chaos and kindergarteners are not familiar with the school or their teachers or their peers. Trust me darlin, your little guy isn't the first to get lost in the shuffle on the first day and he wont be the last, hardly an incident to brand the staff as incompetent. If your 6 yr old is having alleged arguments on the existence of Santa Clause than that says more about you as a parent than it does about the teacher. 99% of 6 yr olds in public schools believe in Santa Clause, but don't let that get in your way of crushing their childhood fantasy? Wow! I believe Dr. Messinger has stated that the school system would work out something for parents who wanted their kids to opt out of the class, get a hold of yourself, your clearly going off some sort of crazy deepend, "an admission to using this sexual education curriculum for political purposes, meant to turn our children into obedient voters who will pass legislation to legalize certain propositions that they have not bo this point been able to pass"....WHAT??  Ya, no I have a hard time believing that these teachers and doctors and nurses and public health officials have spent the last two years developing this curriculum to take over the world with their liberal agendas. Who says anyone AGREES with anal sex. NOBODY IS TEACHING THAT ANAL SEX IS GOOD OR BAD. Do you see that? They are teaching that the anus can be penetrated and that constitutes SEX. And that if you engage in this behavior you can get sick and possibly DIE. Because Shaunna, guess are engaging in anal sex...and guess what else Shaunna, they are getting diseases...and guess what else Shaunna...they are DIEING!! My goodness that is the entire point here. Kids are engaging in these behaviors and they are getting sick and they are spreading diseases around to each other and they are getting pregnant. And guess who is paying for all of this. You and I are and that is the reason it is the job of our school system to teach your kids and my kids, BECAUSE PARENTS ARENT DOING IT. How do I know that you ask? Here are two sources for you to read up on Shaunna. One lists all of our disease statistics... And since you asked here is another site you should read up on showing that if we start educating our kids on sex, since a majority of them are having sex, then what we are proposing will in fact decrease disease and unwanted pregnancy. How do I know that will happen, because it is being done in most of the rest of the MODERN WORLD..... Now I can get you a hundred resources that will show you that most of the world teaches sex ed and they benefit from this education, but I have no doubt you will choose to not believe it. Fine, but you are advocating that my kids should be prevented from learning this material and I am advocating that I think you should let your kids learn it in this environment, but by golly if you are that dead set against it, by all means feel free to remove them from the class. I have no problem with that. Who is trying to impress their beliefs on whom here Shaunna? Stop with the me me me and take a deep breath and try thinking about OTHER PEOPLE here. We see that you and I are involved parents here. I spent 4 hours standing outside Front Street Learning Center...did you? But I will tell you that the majority of parents were not in attendance, so what about their kids. The world doesn't revolve around you and your kids. We are talking about what is best for the greater number of kids. I know your not suggesting that my kids get educated from your kids Shaunna, but they don't care what we think, they talk amongst themselves and that is what I was referring to. I don't spend all day at school with my kids and during my teaching years I didn't supervise all of my students conversations, but trust me they are talking about S E X. shhh! You havent seen this topic come up in your year of college??? Why would you unless you are going to college for this topic? I feel like I am spinning in circles here...HUH? Don't break your arm patting yourself on the back just yet Shaunna, be careful you could end up like Sarah Palin. Where did I lump you as a "christian homophobe" Shaunna. STOP MAKING STUFF UP ONCE AGAIN.

  14. dolphind3
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    dolphind3 - July 13, 2010 10:33 pm
    Wow, no one said that parents want to keep their kids in the dark, why do you keep making that up? It is not up to you to save my kids gun, they don't need saving. My wife and I are educating them very well. As for being stuck on a word, Even the paper itself has quoted in many articles that in the 6th grade kids will be taught that it is ok for a man to love another man. I am sorry but that is not education but it is personal belief. You can beleive it if you want but don't try to force it on anyone else. We are not scared of anything. I think you are more scared that your little agenda could fail. Quit throwing your education around, some of the boggest contributers in this countries history didn't even have a high school education. You are so set on your point of view that you refuse to see that some of the proposal is not education(not all of it) is personal beliefs not education. Alot of it I agree with. But because I or anyone else disagree with a small part of it, you resort to derogatory comments about either their point of view or their education or just plain call names in other threads too. Not everyone is going to agree with your opinion and you can't force it on people. I am not forcing anyone to agree with me, not even my kids. But I will educate them as my wife and I see fit, not shelter them or anything else you want to make up.
    Shauna I agree with you, and my kids are well past the whole santa thing.
  15. ShaunnaMichelle
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    ShaunnaMichelle - July 13, 2010 10:30 pm
    Absolutely I will recite the part where the children will “be taught how to engage in such acts”. “Sexual intercourse includes but is not limited to vaginal, oral, or anal penetration; using the penis, fingers, tongue or objects” page 45 of the curriculum under grade 6. They are therefore not only teaching the children the various “options” for sexual intercourse, they are teaching them which objects or body parts to use for these purposes. I feel that is taking things a bit far for the grade level they are proposing this curriculum for. Children will have questions about this topic and I’m not comfortable with a teacher being the one to explain such topics.
    I have met my sons’ teachers, principal, school nurse, counselor, and some of the school board members as well. I still do not want these people teaching my son this subject matter without my presence. I’m sure many of the parents of children in the news had met their child’s teacher and were “fully confident” in “their ability to teach” their children “what they have been professionally trained to teach.” I’m sure those same parents were shocked and dismayed when things went too far and their child ended up being sexually abused by the teacher. It has been on the news more and more in recent months. I, for one, limit my trust for people who have contact with my children. Especially those people I only know for a limited amount of time before my child is supposed to be left with them. I know “competent” teachers who lost my son on the first day of kindergarten and could not find him in the school for nearly 20 minutes. I know “competent” teachers who argued the existence of Santa Claus with my son, telling him in front of the entire class that HE is wrong and that his family is wrong. Teachers and educators are still people after all and they have their own thoughts, feelings and beliefs. On one of the websites listed as a source for the curriculum on the district website, the site specifically states, “Montana neither requires parental permission for students to participate in sexuality or HIV/AIDS education nor does it say whether parents or guardians may remove their children from such classes.” It seems to me that these people not only feel that parents should not have a say in what our children are taught, but also that we should not even be notified. So as a parent, I will not have an option to remove my child from this class if I have to place my child in public school.
    I do not have a bizarre obsession with the Easter Bunny and Santa Clause. I simple find it extremely hypocritical that the teachers choose to not only “engage in the fun, childlike fantasies of these characters” but that they will also argue, against family beliefs, that these characters are real and should be believed in regardless of what that child is taught at home. And now they want to teach my children “facts” about sex from their viewpoint as well, with no thought or regard to our family’s feelings or beliefs on the matter. Again, the site referenced at the bottom of the curriculum states “SIECUS views comprehensive sexuality education that includes unbiased information about sexual orientation and gender identity as a vital step toward educating individuals and changing society.” In short I view that statement as an admission to using this sexual education curriculum for political purposes, meant to turn our children into obedient voters who will pass legislation to legalize certain propositions that they have not to this point been able to pass. And before you comment, I don’t really care if you marry a horse. I just don’t want others pushing their political propaganda on my 10 year old.
    I don’t need to point out the section on morals and values because the entire document is a stance on certain morals and values. For example, every Christian who has a problem with this curriculum has been called backwards, homophobic, or various other insults. Why? Christians have their own morals and values that they want to teach their children. It is quite possible, obviously, that not everyone agrees with anal sex or inserting “objects” into your body. We’re lumped as “you people” and “bass ackwards” (to use your colorful description) when some of us might not even have the same objections or foundations for our objections. You lump us as Christian homophobes when we simply want the ability to continue making decisions as parents without the interference of the state or the school. I am not blinded by the words homosexual or anal; I just don’t feel it is the schools’ place to make the decision to teach these subjects to my children. I wonder why you are not also guilty of seeing “red” in that you are vehemently arguing FOR this legislation. What makes your way better? Just because you do not want to teach your own children about sexual topics does not mean that all parents want that responsibility to be handed over to the state or school board without our consent. You might feel that the teachers have my child’s best interest at heart, but you forget that I, too, have my child’s best interest at heart….and it is my responsibility more than anyone else’s to guide and instruct my children as I see fit.
    I am concerned about children who have no parental leadership. I, however, provide parental leadership for my children. They are in a stable household with both of their parents and they are not left for hours on end to their own devices after school. Our lives have been scheduled to meet the needs of our children and we teach them things that are age-appropriate. I am an educated adult who is currently continuing my education further. I, at 34, have no need to discuss anything sexual with my mother because I am old enough to make the decision to educate myself and I have access to resources such as the library and the internet to seek out information I need. But we are not discussing a 34 or 35 year old woman, are we? We’re discussing young children who are 7 and 10 (in my children’s’ case). I am not suggesting that you allow your children to get their information from my children. It is not my responsibility, nor my child’s responsibility, to teach your children about sexual topics.
    I do not yet have a college degree, though after more than a year of college I have not seen this topic come up in any of my classes. However, college degree aside, I have the authority to speak on the subject because I am a mother of two children who has done a fine job up to this point of raising them to be polite, respectful, kind, and intelligent young men. Honestly, my freedom of speech involves stating that I do not wish my children to be taught this subject matter at the public school level. My freedom of speech allows me the right to ask the courts to intervene with any person I feel is guilty of sexual abuse (physical or psychological) on my child. My child’s freedom of speech would allow them the right to verbalize how they feel about this curriculum (which I have discussed with them). My child’s freedom of speech would allow them the right to fight for their beliefs verbally in class, even if the teacher insists they are wrong. My child’s freedom of speech would allow them to speak the truth. I’m sure I could go on, but you get the point. I have rights too, and so do my children.
    What statistics do you have to back your claim that the majority of parents won’t/don’t/can’t teach their kids? Just because there were 333 teenage pregnancies does not mean that these parents did not teach their children. Plus, you had your years wrong, it took 3 years (from 2006-2008) to reach 333 teen pregnancies in Montana, which is 55.1 pregnancies per 1000 teenagers. The national average is 70. It could just mean that these children made a decision. There are no statistics to support the claim that sexual education of this sort will reduce the rate of teen pregnancies. You quote the statistic of 333 teen pregnancies in Helena, but Montana as a whole only ranked 38th in the U.S. for teen pregnancy rates. Knowing different ways of exploring sexuality does not mean that they will lower the teen pregnancy rate. The fact is we have been teaching children about STD’s for many years and that has not stopped them from having sex. We went from abstinence only education to teaching about using protection and yet teen pregnancy is still a problem. There are no statistics to prove that this type of curriculum will, in fact, reduce teen pregnancy. It is like letting your children play with fire so they don’t burn down the barn.
  16. crush728
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    crush728 - July 13, 2010 8:19 pm
    In my opinion, those who pay taxes for the school system have the right to reclaim those funds if they are to take their kids out of school for classes they feel are not within the school's job as educators.

    In my opinion, oh we are still allowed to have one in this country? Really? Or move, right?????????
  17. The Big L
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    The Big L - July 13, 2010 3:00 pm
    Statistics show that your kids are already aware of oral sex by age 10 and guess what, many have already done it. I know we think that our children are these innocent little angels that can not be privy to the real world without us teaching it to them, but that's not the truth.
  18. gun961960
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    gun961960 - July 13, 2010 1:56 pm
    Maybe you could cut/copy/paste the part of the proposed curriculum where they are going to "be taught how to engage in such acts"? Cuz I am not seeing that part? I see they are going to teach that sexual intercourse includes vaginal, oral and anal intercourse. You do understand that explaining to kids the facts of sexual intercourse and teaching them how to engage in such acts are quite different. Do you know or have you even met your school nurse, counselor, PE teachers? Do you really believe they have dishonorable intentions toward your children. I have met on several occasions all of the above EDUCATED PROFESSIONALS at my childrens school and am fully confident in their ability to teach my kids WHAT THEY HAVE BEEN PROFESSIONALLY TRAINED TO TEACH. The same as I do for all of my kids teachers so far.
    What is your bizarre obsession with the Easter Bunny and Santa Clause??? So because teachers engage in the fun, childlike fantasies of these characters they are now hypocrytes because they also want to teach real life facts? HUH? Maybe you could also point out the section on morals and values? You people crack me up. You are so bass ackwards on what is actually going to be taught you don't even know what you are upset about. You are BLINDED by the words homosexual and anal....all you are seeing is red. WAKE UP and calm down and really read the actually curriculum. Don't add your own words or do any other fill in the blank, worse case scenario BS. These teachers have your kids best interest at heart, they really do.
    Shaunna, are you really concerned about these poor kids who have no parental leadership? So your solution is to keep them completely in the dark, so they have NO educated adult in their life to give them this potentially LIFE OR DEATH information. So they should continue to get their info from YOUR KIDS, who don't get any info unless they happen to ask you a question. I don't know about you, but as a 35 yr old woman I wouldn't have the slightest interest in discussing anything sexual with my mother. YUK! And I am a Health professional. Where are you seeing they are not offering the Opt out option? WHERE ARE YOU GETTING ANY OF YOUR INFORMATION SHAUNNA??? You must STOP making stuff up to scare yourself and other people.
    What is this supposed to mean exactly, "if they insist on treading on my job as a parent without offering me any recourse to prevent it, I will engage them in turn by allowing my children their RIGHT to FREE speech insted of encouraging them to smile and accept others' fallacies" AND "I have just as much right to interfere with others' parenting as they do with mine". WHAT? What is your college degree in may I ask?
    The problem is, THE MAJORITY OF PARENTS WONT/DONT/CANT TEACH THEIR KIDS Shaunna, hence the 333 teenage pregnancies we had in two years in Helena. We have a problem here Shaunna, a real life one, nothing made up about that statistic.
  19. Bojangles
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    Bojangles - July 13, 2010 10:13 am
    Hey Dietz... is your argument that because such bullying tendencies exist we should simply let them continue? A group of kids ridicule another until they have no where to turn but suicide or outward violence and your reaction is 'kids will be kids'?!

    Well, I'm certain thankful that the majority of our society has evolved beyond the intellect of the caveman or women would never vote, blacks would never be free, and our country wouldn't have EVER BEEN CREATED.

    You folks don't want to raise children, you want to raise mushrooms!
  20. jmundinger
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    jmundinger - July 13, 2010 10:07 am
    chamules said: And to those of you who insist that there is no God, I am praying that someday you will come to know Him. He is very real. "

    It is not a matter of insisting that there is no God. Rather, is a matter of questioning whether we are talking about a God of Love or a god of wrath. That difference leads in very different directions when considering how personal faith informs how a person engages social/political issues of the day.

  21. chamules
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    chamules - July 13, 2010 6:15 am
    What an embarrassment to the people of Helena to have this curriculum being proposed. Perhaps the school board should focus on teaching our children reading, writing, and arithmetic instead of this.......junk.......that is nothing more than a liberal agenda. Time to boot Messinger and the entire school board to the curb.

    And to those of you who insist that there is no God, I am praying that someday you will come to know Him. He is very real.
  22. ShaunnaMichelle
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    ShaunnaMichelle - July 12, 2010 7:48 pm
    dolphind3 said: "It is not the teachers place or your childrens place to tell the other kids that there is no Santa Shaunna. That is up to the parents. "

    I absolutely agree. However, that extends to sexual education as well. It is not the teacher's place to tell MY son about oral or anal sex at the age of 10. My child's education on things of that nature are up to me, the parent. If they insist on treading on my job as a parent without offering me any recourse to prevent it, I will engage them in turn by allowing my children their RIGHT to FREE speech instead of encouraging them to smile and accept others' fallacies. If you want to teach your children about Santa Claus, so be it. I want to teach my children about sex and such on MY time and theirs. I don't want some stranger discussing these things with my children. The classrooms in America are already being tainted by teachers sleeping with students, bullying, sub-par education and the like. I will not have the boundaries blurred on what is acceptable behavior or discussion between a teacher and my child. I have just as much right to interfere with others' parenting as they do with mine.
  23. dolphind3
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    dolphind3 - July 12, 2010 5:15 pm
    It is not the teachers place or your childrens place to tell the other kids that there is no Santa Shaunna. That is up to the parents.
  24. Jimbo
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    Jimbo - July 12, 2010 3:29 pm
    In my opinion, the school should just offer the option for the parents to either opt-in or opt-out of the class, and have an alternative course for those who have opted out.
  25. ShaunnaMichelle
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    ShaunnaMichelle - July 12, 2010 3:27 pm
    My objection is to the human sexuality section of this proposol. The part that really got me was the part about oral and anal sex. It is written like it will be a "how to" day in which they will be taught how to engage in such acts, but I am also concerned about the fact that I did not want my children getting the idea to practice these things when they do become sexually active. I'll admit that I am probably coming from an emotional standpoint on the issue since I am a survivor of sexual abuse in which these acts were involved. It is therefore very difficult to not react with an intense rebellion to the idea that my children will be subjected to these subjects with complete strangers. I am angry that these people automatically assume that all parents are defunct when teaching their children about sex. I, for one, am very open and honest with my children about sex. However, I usually wait for them to ask a question. The question signals to me that they are ready for the information. Maybe that's inaccurate, but it has worked thus far for my family and for my children. My son's response to hearing about this potential curriculum was that he "does not want to discuss these things in front of the other kids" and I'm sure that's going to be a common feeling amongst 5th graders.

    It bothers me that these same teachers will stand up in front of class and INSIST that Santa, the Easter Bunny, and the Tooth Fairy are all real (I have had teachers do so)...even in the face of a child questioning that information. However, they are prepared to speak the "whole truth" to the "whole child" in regards to sex. That is a double standard to me. Again, I'm speaking from an emotional standpoint. My kids are well-informed of who Santa and the rest are and where the stories come from. My children have been silenced and teachers have insisted o them that they are incorrect in their facts. So you will lie to them about Santa, but tell them all about anal sex?

    Valuable classroom time will be taken up with this curriculum while children who cannot be "left behind" will go through class without completely understanding the basics of education or without being able to read. I've seen that happen already here in town. It just feels like there's a huge shift from teaching reading, writing, and arithmetic to teaching morals, values, and other things that SHOULD be taught by the parents.

    It also concerns me that those same children who do not have a dialogue with their parents about these topics still will not have a dialogue and that will create frustration and anxiety in these children. This type of frustration and anxiety can sometimes lead to children making fun of the topic or using this information to tease and belittle other children. They still do not have a complete handle on bullying in schools and now I feel they will be adding more "fuel to the fire" so to speak.

    Lastly, this curriculum is so wide and spread throughout different departments in the school that it would be nearly impossible to opt out of the curriculum and they don't seem to be offering that option at this point anyway. Most of the proponents of this curriculum offer only the suggestion that the parents who are not for the curriculum should remove their children from school. I would gladly do so, except there are limited and expensive alternatives to public school here. We cannot currently afford these alternatives.
  26. dolphind3
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    dolphind3 - July 12, 2010 1:11 pm
    Again, It is not the schools job to teach our kids what amounts to personal beliefs, the rest I can live with. Quit trying to raise everyone elses kids.
  27. dietz1963
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    dietz1963 - July 12, 2010 12:47 pm
    Honestly its all a moot point for various reasons. First, so called experts in the field wrote the cirriculum so unless an equal amount of experts with a different opinion on said cirriculum voice concerns it doesn't matter what we common folk think. Secondly, in the interest of equality, they have to endorse the cirriculum or be faced with potential lawsuits for being either discriminatory or bigotted. Look at how the posts have gone, those for the cirriculum are "the today" crowd with those against being called racist, discrimitory, haters or homophobic simply for differing in opinion. The only way to avoid that would be to have sex education completely eliminated and that won't happen. As the old saying goes, its easier to write the law then revoke it.

    I found it interesting that the IR published back in June the majority of folks want the cirriculum. A whopping 374 responses is what the majority was based on, thats less then .01 percent of the Helena population and I wonder how many didn't respond for fear of being attacked by proponents for their opinion?

    But lets be clear about something, provided that the cirriculum gets approved I personnally doubt it will do squat to reduce single pregnancies or sexually tranmitted diseases. Nor do I doubt there will be more tolerance toward the gay community either, bullies are bullies. Kids are equally picked on/beat up to this day by bigger stronger kids even though its not acceptable, gay or not gay doesn't matter. Jocks still have a tendancy to push around non-jocks, extremely smart kids still push around kids they think are dumb. Anyone living in a trailer court is still considered "low/second class" by the upper class. Rich kids still dog poor kids even if that poor kid is smart and a jock etc....
  28. Curmudgeon
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    Curmudgeon - July 12, 2010 11:09 am
    For Mr. Demato's information (he apparently needs to know) issues of public policy in this country are decided not on the basis of somebody's interpretation of the Judaeo-Christian fairytale book (Bible) or the teachings of some church or another. They are (OR SHOULD BE) decided in accord with national and state constitutions, and public law. Unless Mr. Demato would prefer to have all public issues decided theocratically?
  29. thedukeofhelena
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    thedukeofhelena - July 12, 2010 9:35 am
    Oh no, not this again. Leave your religion OUT of our schools. Please! When will you ever get it? Not everyone believes what you do nor should they be required to. Personally, I'm fine with the sex-ed curriculum that is proposed at our public schools. Some people aren't. We are all entitled to our opinion but you cross the line when you try to insert your religious beliefs into the mix also. Save it for the pulpit!
  30. bhallinan
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    bhallinan - July 12, 2010 9:30 am
    Correction on "bhallinan said on: July 12, 2010, 8:34 am"
    The ICR god made the universe in 6,000 years. Concerning the issue at hand, the sex education component of the health curriculum, I fail to see how Mr. DeMato's church has anything new to add to the conversation that common sense, reason, and understanding in 2010 has not surpassed.
  31. bhallinan
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    bhallinan - July 12, 2010 8:34 am
    I visted Mr. DeMato's web site. Two things. It is ironic that the Church name begins with "Liberty". Liberty is a word that describes the concept of political philosophy and identifies the condition in which an individual has the right to act according to his or her own will. My guess is Mr. DeMato has a worldview where the bible describes the conditions in which he has the right to act according to his own will. This would be a 4th century worldview and predates an Islamic 7th century world view by 300 years. Second, his web site links to the Institue for Creation Research (ICR). The ICR their god made the universe in 6,000 years.
  32. bhallinan
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    bhallinan - July 12, 2010 8:22 am
    Mr. Demato suggests that "Most Christians who believe the Bible is correct in its teachings do not feel comfortable with the health draft being proposed." How large this segment of the population? If I understand his statement, these Christians also believe slavery is correct as is divine monarchy since these are biblical teachings. The bible for centuries has the rationale on which to crucify human rights. Fortunately, the model of Jesus and his twelve male companions, suggest compassionate action, understanding, inclusion of the marginalized, and reconciliation are the hallmarks of the Juedeo-Christain tradition. See:,, and

  33. tolerant
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    tolerant - July 12, 2010 8:15 am

    I don't agree with the sex-ed as drafted, but leave your religion out of our schools also.

  34. enu_22
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    enu_22 - July 12, 2010 8:09 am
  35. jmundinger
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    jmundinger - July 12, 2010 8:06 am
    In my opinion, the pulpit is appropriately used to proclaim the Gospel, not to promote a political agenda.

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