Attempts Continue to Keep Parents Informed
By Amanda Hudson, News Editor
September 1, 2022
DIOCESE—Bishop David Malloy sent a letter dated Aug. 22 to all priests for them to distribute to the parents in their respective parishes through the parish bulletin or by 
other means.
 
In that letter to “Parents and Guardians in the Diocese of Rockford,” Bishop Malloy urges them to be aware of the new sexual education standards in Illinois public schools referred to as “comprehensive sex education.” Those education standards, he says, “can cause irreparable harm to children, are contrary to Catholic teaching on God’s gift of sexuality, undermine parents’ rights, and indoctrinate children to a particular social agenda.”
 
He is not alone in his concern.
 
Family Watch International, a consultative organization to the United Nations, states that the harmful effects of this education include: teaching children to consent to sex; teaching abortion and contraception; promoting homosexual and bisexual behavior, solo or mutual masturbation, and gender confusion; and otherwise “undermines parental rights (and) traditional values and beliefs” and “refers children to harmful resources.”
 
The comprehensive sex education will affect kindergarten through grade 12 in Illinois schools that opt in. As of Aug. 22, school districts that have adopted the new comprehensive sex education curriculum include the Rockford School District 205 and the DeKalb Community Unit School District 428. 
 
An up-to-date spreadsheet at https://tinyurl.com/2mr3mkfh shows that, as of Aug. 26, of the 860 school districts in Illinois, 24 are adopting the new sex education curriculum, 544 are opting out, and close to 300 have either not responded or are waiting to respond or decide. Those undecided districts are where Bishop Malloy especially urges “Catholic parents and guardians to make known to their school boards their objections to the curriculum.”
 
As of Aug. 26, the counties encompassing the Diocese of Rockford are listed as follows:
 
– Boone County school districts have opted out; 
 
– Carroll County School District 314 is unknown; the other two districts have opted out;
 
– Only DeKalb County School District 428 opted in; the rest have opted out; 
 
– Kane County has one unknown (Aurora East #131) and the rest have opted out; 
 
– McHenry County has five unknowns (districts 3, 19, 50, 154, 156) and the rest are opting out;
 
– Lee County districts are all unknown;
 
– Ogle County has one unknown (District 269), the rest have opted out;
 
– All districts in Stephenson County have opted out;
 
– Whiteside County has three unknowns (3, 6, 12); the rest have opted out;
 
– Only Winnebago County’s District 205 in Rockford has opted in; districts 133, 321 and 322 are unknown; the rest have opted out.
 
Parents with children in the districts that opt in can take steps to help protect their children. Those steps, as stated in the bishop’s letter, include:
 
 Educating themselves to make informed decisions;
 
 Petitioning their school boards to choose not to teach comprehensive sexual education;
 
n Deciding to individually opt their children out of this education; and
 
 Remaining vigilant in being aware of who is teaching their children and what they are teaching.
 
Opt Out forms and additional information is available on the Life and Family Evangelization (LiFE) Office website: https://www.rockforddiocese.org/life/current-life-issues/parental-rights/
 
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