Over a thousand outraged parents who have children enrolled in taxpayer-funded public schools in Fremont, Calif. have signed petitions threatening legal action over a ninth-grade health textbook featuring oral sex, vibrators, and bondage.
The 392-page textbook, which will be in use in the Bay Area school district, is called “Your Health Today.” It is rarely assigned to ninth graders, and it is not used in any other California school districts. Instead, it is most frequently used by professors in college-level health classes, the San Francisco Chronicle reports.
The semester-long course in which the textbook will be used is a required course for high school graduation.
In addition to the bondage information, Fremont high school freshmen get to see detailed illustrations of female and male sexual organs in different phases of arousal.
The book also contains guidelines for using Internet dating sites, information concerning masturbation and explanations of the major sexual positions.
School officials have defended their decision to utilize the textbook by saying that 14-year-old kids need to know about sex, bondage and orgasms well before they reach college.
“We really want them to have a safe place to get facts about their bodies and how to handle things and how they need to be mature to deal with these things,” Fremont Unified School District board president Lara Calvert-York told the Chronicle.
Michele Hartmangruber, who works at a Fremont high school, heartily endorsed the book’s contents.
"I want to let everyone know, if you think sex isn’t happening with your freshmen, you need to take your blinders off," she said at a June school board meeting. "It’s happening, and it’s happening in the corners, in the bathrooms, in the cars, in the parks and even on the 50-yard line in ront of everyone." Thus, Hartmangruber concluded, "You have to educate at the ninth-grade level."
The parents who have signed the petition disagree. "I feel that it’s not age appropriate for these kids," mad mother Asfia Ahmed, who has a son entering ninth grade, told the Chronicle.