Sacramento School District Has Been Pushing Radical Gender Theory Since 2012, Documents Show
Children listen to their teacher as they sit in a classroom on the first day of the start of the school year, at the Chaptal elementary school in Paris, on September 2, 2019.
MARTIN BUREAU/AFP via Getty Images

The Sacramento Unified School District has been pushing radical gender theory in its classrooms for at least a decade, according to documents.

The documents, obtained by writer and activist Christopher Rufo, show that the Sacramento USD has been pushing teachers and school administrators to adopt the core tenets of radical gender theory since at least 2012. Training materials and presentations obtained by Rufo encourage LGBT teachers to openly express their sexuality, while pushing straight teachers to self-discriminate, hiding their sexuality in favor of being an “ally” to LGBT teachers. The documents also encourage teachers to take similar steps to become allies of transgender students as well, Rufo reported.

“Sacramento Unified has been working on this for a decade,” Rufo wrote in a Twitter thread accompanying his report. “In 2012, the district invited academic queer theorist Elizabeth Meyer to conduct a leadership presentation on how to launder ‘queer pedagogy’ into the K-12 system and create ‘sexual diversity.’”

Rufo also included photos from the Sacramento USD’s official website, showing a presentation from Dr. Elizabeth J. Meyer, who at the time was a professor of Education at California Polytechnic State University, as the keynote address for their “No Time To Lose 2012 Conference.”

The presentation is included in the documents Rufo obtained. In the presentation, Meyer provides teachers with tools to inculcate schools with an LGBT-friendly environment. On an individual basis, Meyer instructs teachers to watch “educational” LGBT films and documentaries, or to “[a]ttend an event sponsored by a local GLBT advocacy organization”; and invite a colleague to view the film or attend the event with them.

At a classroom level, Meyer encourages teachers to “[c]hallenge your own assumptions” about LGBT students, to “use inclusive language” such as “parent or guardian” or “partner or spouse”; and “avoid gender-specific language and assumptions in class activities,” including asking girls to clean the classroom, or dividing students up by gender during classroom activities.

Furthermore, the presentation instructs straight teachers to self-discriminate. “If you are heterosexual, donʼt state it,” it says. “Allow yourself to be an ally while allowing others to be uncertain about your sexual orientation.” Meanwhile, it encourages LGBT teachers to openly express their sexuality. “If you are GLBT, consider coming out to your employer, and if you get their support, your students/school,” the presentation says. In either case, it encourages teachers to “[a]ctively include issues relating to sexual orientation and gender identity in your classes,” and “[i]nvite GLBT speakers to address your class.”

At a school level, the presentation encourages teachers to confront name-calling, or “stop and educate” students in public areas, such as hallways, cafeterias, bathrooms, and locker rooms. It also directs teachers to help establish a “Gay-Straight Alliance” or other gender diversity group in their schools; starting a “safety and equity task force” at their schools; and pushing to “[r]evise and update school policies to address gendered harassment and cyber-bullying.”

Furthermore, it directs teachers to work with students and other teachers to organize a “Day of Silence” or a “No Name Calling Week”; invite community members to work on the “safety and equity task force”; ask school librarians to create a display of books and resources on sex, gender, and sexual orientation; integrate sex and gender issues into their curricula; and invite outside presenters to speak on sexuality issues.

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