Sat, Nov 16, 2013 - Page 4 News List

Ministry censured over inappropriate textbooks

Staff writer, with CNA

The Ministry of Education was censured on Thursday for elementary and middle-school textbooks on sexual equality with content that has been found to be inappropriate or even illegal, including an assertion that “abortion is a legal and reasonable option.”

The Control Yuan’s Educational and Cultural Affairs Committee approved a motion to censure the ministry after reviewing the textbooks, which also included instructions on how to teach students to apply plastic wraps for protection during oral sex.

Control Yuan member Gau Fehng-shian (高鳳仙), who proposed the motion, criticized the ministry for not having been briefed well enough when commissioning the textbooks.

In Taiwan, abortion is legal only under certain conditions, such as rape, or when the pregnancy or the birth could put the mother’s life in danger.

Other content found inappropriate included sections that teach about sexual intercourse between men and how to use water-soluble lubricants.

In response, the Ministry of Education said it would exercise more caution in the future and allow wider public participation in the textbook compilation process.

One of the books in question — Learning About Homosexuality — would be recalled, the ministry said, even though the books are in fact teaching manuals which are not issued to students.

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