Curriculum Changes to FCPS Family Life Education


The Fairfax County School Board voted 10-1 to become the only school system in Virginia to add “gender identity” to its anti-discrimination policy despite an overwhelming majority of citizens in attendance expressing opposition.

The School Board is now preparing to vote on June 25 on broad changes to its Sex-Ed or “Family Life Education” Program, including lessons related to gender identity beginning in 7th grade, including:

  • Grade 7: “Students will be provided definitions for sexual orientation terms heterosexuality, homosexuality, and bisexuality; and the gender identity term transgender.”
  • Grade 8: “Individual identity will . . . be described as having four parts – biological gender, gender identity (includes transgender), gender role, and sexual orientation (includes heterosexual, bisexual, and homosexual). The concept that sexuality is a broader spectrum will be introduced.
  • Grade 9:”Students will recognize development of sexuality as a lifelong aspect of personality. Instruction will include that individuals are sexual beings from birth to death and that sexuality evolves from infancy to old age. Sexual orientation terms heterosexual, homosexual and bisexual; and the gender identity terms transgender will be defined”.
  • Grade 10: “Emphasis will be placed on an understanding that there is a broader, boundless, and fluid spectrum of sexuality that is developed throughout a lifetime. Sexual orientation and gender identity terms will be discussed with focus on appreciation for individual differences.”

All of this is in addition to the explicit material that is already being taught to children as young as 4th grade. There is a recommendation that FLE lessons introduce contraception in 9th grade instead of 10th grade.

In addition to gender identity items, other changes to the Family Life Education (FLE) curriculum include moving many lessons from the FLE curriculum to “Emotional and Social Health,” making those lessons mandatory with no opt-out. Out of one hundred six (106) lessons in the Kindergarten through 12th Grade curricula, a total of fifty (50) are recommended to be moved from “Family Life Education” to the “Emotional and Social Health Unit”, making those lessons mandatory for all students regardless of parents’ wishes. Parents are allowed to opt out their children from “Family Life Education” but not from “Emotional and Social Health” instruction. Most of the lesson reassignment recommendations seem innocuous, until you consider, for instance, how the family structure will be taught to kindergarteners in light of the School Board’s vote last month to include gender identity in its anti-discrimination policy:

  • Kindergarten “Students will recognize that everyone is a member of a family and identify members of their individual families”
  • Grade 1 “Students will describe a community as people living and working together and will understand that family members make up a community”.
  • Grade 2 “Students will identify adults other than parent or guardian who provide care and support for children”.