Our Nebraska MassResistance Affiliate …
Parents’ group in Omaha fights radical sex-ed curriculum. Distributes “opt-out” forms outside every middle school in the city.
Gets Catholic Archdiocese to officially join the fight!
(Part 1 of 4)
December 4 2016
In Omaha, the battle to protect children and families from a radical sexuality-LGBT program being imposed on schoolchildren has literally taken to the streets.
Last July we reported how our Nebraska MassResistance affiliate, Nebraskans for Founders’ Values (NFV) had organized and mobilized parents city-wide to oppose and derail a district-wide “comprehensive sex-ed” program passed in May by the Omaha Public Schools (OPS) Board after a big battle. There was also an aggressive “transgender non-discrimination” rule to follow.
Read about the OPS "comprehensive sex-ed" curriculum.
Caution: Very disturbing.
Background: A great team of parents (and grandparents!) taking on the establishment
The battle has continued. NFV is arguably one of the best organized city-wide parent groups in America. They have hundreds of parents involved at various levels. A large core group meets every week, run by the group leader, Mark Bonkiewicz, an incredible organizer and motivator. They work closely with MassResistance on tactics, strategy and other issues.
As in other parts of the country, they are fighting not only the School Board, but also local LGBT activists who work closely with the Board to push their agenda into the minds of Omaha’s children. The School Board's attitude toward parents has been condescending, hostile, and downright arrogant. In addition, the LGBT activists do their best to intimidate the parents. But through all of it, these parents haven’t backed down at all.
Keeping up the pressure
During August and September the NFV team continued to bring parents to School Board meetings to testify and have other parents across the city write letters. This was important, to keep pressure on the School Board and also send a message to the LGBT activists that these parents are going to protect their children no matter what.
The “opt-out” campaign begins
In middle schools and high schools children are automatically enrolled in the “comprehensive sex-ed” classes unless the parents specifically opt them out. However, the schools have not been forthright with the parents, either in describing the procedures for opt out or making proper forms available.
So the NFV group has streamlined that process for parents. They created a very clear and easy to use opt-out form that was vetted by attorneys from the Thomas More Society.
Over the summer, the NFV group also made 26 presentations in 75 days at dozens of Evangelical, Hispanic, and African-American churches across Omaha to educate the community on the issue. During these presentations, opt-out forms were distributed to parents.
Especially important was their meetings with officials at the Catholic Archdiocese of Omaha, so the Church officials understood exactly what was happening. Nearly 80% of all Catholic children in Nebraska attend public schools.
Offering “opt-out” forms at every middle school in Omaha
Monday and Tuesday, Aug. 29 and 30, became the big "opt-out" push at schools. At all twelve middle schools in Omaha, two, three, or four-person NFV teams were coached to deliver "opt-out" forms and instructions during a 30-45 minute time window when parents were picking up their middle school children.
They also gave the parents flyers that clearly described what the "comprehensive sex-ed" actually includes. Most parents were completely unaware of how bad it was!
Half of each team was positioned with signs and opt-out forms on public sidewalks near school driveway entrances or exits. The other half walked through the school parking lots to distribute the opt out forms to parents who were sitting in their cars or waiting in line for their children to walk out of school. The teams worked simultaneously on this distribution from 2:15-3:30 pm.
The OPS administration was clearly angry at that tactic. They definitely don’t want middle school children opting out of the “comprehensive sexuality” program. At several schools, school officials (and in some cases even police) came out and told NFV volunteers they had to leave. But when the volunteers insisted that that public sidewalks and streets were open to everyone, the school officials and even the police backed down. They also tried to tell school parents to stay away from the volunteers, but that didn’t work, either.
Then on Tuesday evening, Aug. 30, NFV teammates stood with signs at the middle school driveway entrances or exits from 6:15 pm to 8:30 pm as parents and their children were arriving or leaving from the annual Open House being held at every middle school in Omaha.
It was a great success! Over 700 parents took the opt-out forms and said they’d be using them for their kids! The NFV activists said they got VERY positive feedback.
Local TV report on "sidewalk blitz" by NFV volunteers:
On its 10 pm news that evening, Omaha TV station KMtV Ch. 3 aired a report on the "sidewalk blitz" by NFV volunteers to opt-out children across the city! Take a look: It's the only "positive" mainstream media news report on a pro-family activity, especially on this issue, that we've seen in years:
Archdiocese of Omaha officially enters the battle!
The following day, all the efforts that NFV teammates had invested for the past 18 months working with Catholic officials, and at the parent meetings in churches across the city, came to fruition.
On Aug. 31, the Archdiocese of Omaha published a powerful article on its website encouraging Catholics to opt-out their children from Omaha Public Schools comprehensive sex-ed curriculum.
The article included material from NFV’s literature, quotes from a couple of NFV volunteers (including a physician who’s an infectious disease specialist), and links to the NFV website.
It noted that many Catholics have removed their children from the Omaha Public Schools because of the comprehensive sexuality program and are either sending them to local Catholic schools or homeschooling them.
This was very important. It gave this battle a huge dose of adrenalin and was a shot across the bow of the school system. And it undoubtedly accelerated the rate of opt-outs being delivered by parents to their local OPS school!
OPS threatens not to accept NFV’s “unofficial” opt-out forms, but parents force the issue!
Almost immediately after the middle school opt-out campaign, word was spread that the Omaha Public School administration would refuse to accept NFV’s “unofficial” opt-out forms. Questions directed to school officials to clarify that went unanswered.
As described above, these forms had been carefully put together in conjunction with NFV’s lawyers. There seemed to be no reason why the hundreds of forms filled out by parents and submitted to the OPS officials shouldn’t be accepted.
NFV members continued to coordinate groups of parents, who come and spoke at the next two School Board meetings from all parts of the city, and demanded answers.
Finally, on Oct. 17, the administration relented and emailed NFV a confirmation that they would accept the forms! A small victory, but we’ll take it.
More to come
Hundreds of middle school children opting out of the “comprehensive sex ed” program clearly antagonized and even angered school officials. They were forced to accept this development.
But the bigger job of stopping the program – or making it all “opt-in” and dealing with the coming school-wide “transgender” was still looming.
Stay tuned for Part 2.