The National Academy for Education Research should impose more rigorous standards to review textbooks prior to publication, representatives of parents’ associations said yesterday, calling the sex and gender education content of some textbooks age-inappropriate.
“Concepts like a ‘gender spectrum,’ ‘heterosexual hegemony,’ ‘homophobia’ and the Web addresses of homosexual groups should be deleted from textbooks,” said Yang Chun-tsu (楊郡慈), a deputy secretary-general of the National Alliance of Presidents of Parents’ Associations.
Protesters showed copies of textbooks using terminology they opposed.
“Education agencies should pay more attention to what textbooks schools use and ensure parents know the choices ahead of time,” Yang said, adding that parental membership in schools’ gender equality and curriculum development committees should be guaranteed.
While high-school curriculum guidelines only call for teaching “respect for gender diversity,” most textbook publishers have interpreted that as mandating instruction on homosexuality, with most textbooks including related content, protesters said, displaying examples.
“Our values should be reflected in the curriculum, because we are the ones who care the most about our children and we are by their sides the longest,” said Liang Mei-hui (梁美慧), another deputy secretary-general of the association.
“We are not opposed to gender-equality education, but we are opposed to a curriculum that cultivates homosexuality,” National Association of Students’ Parents chairman Chen Tieh-hu (陳鐵虎) said. “Gender equality education has started to include a lot of inappropriate additions we find worrying.”
“Using the term heterosexual hegemony is an offense to heterosexuals,” said Wang Li-sheng (王立昇), who heads the National Alliance of Presidents of Parents’ Associations’ supervisory board.
He added that there had been some progress compared with last year’s textbooks, as content about bisexuality had been removed in response to parents’ complaints.
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