Millions of campaign dollars pour in for, against Washington’s sex ed bill
SPOKANE, Wash.– On November 3rd, the 2020 election will come to a close, and a controversial ballot measure will be decided in Washington.
That’s the sex ed bill under Referendum 90.
Some parents are worried about the bill, which would require districts to adopt a comprehensive sex ed curriculum.
Millions of dollars have poured in against the bill and in support of it.
Heather Weiner is a parent and advocate for comprehensive sex ed in Washington. She’s a supporter of the Safe and Healthy Youth Washington PAC, which has raised more than $1.5 million to get R-90 passed.
That pac has spent nearly $600,000 of that to this point on advertisements and other efforts to approve this measure.
Weiner doesn’t believe it is a political decision.
“Approve 90 is endorsed by more than 140 organizations, including the association pediatrics, family physicians, nurses, doctors around the state,” Weiner said.
On the other hand, there is the Parents for Safe Schools PAC campaigning to reject this sex ed bill.
The committee has raised nearly $400,000 to this point and has spent about $248,000 of that.
We reached out to the committee for comment but never heard back. We also reached out to some of the top donors to that PAC, like Jack Connelly, the Reagan Fund and Greg Rowley, but none of them called us back.
There is a clear partisan divide on this bill as the Washington Republican Caucus has said it is against it, while just about every democrat in the Washington House and Senate has voiced support for it.
If the measure is approved, parents can opt their kids out. But, one of the arguments against this bill is the worry of a student still learning about sex ed from classmates in the school yard.
“I think it’s best students are hearing the facts, they’re getting scientific and medically accurate info, so they don’t learn the wrong information in the school yard,” Weiner said.
One focus of this sex-ed curriculum would be consent and showing students what that looks like.
That will vary by each grade for students, and in the end, curriculum will be decided by each district.
“Boy, I wish I had learned this when I was a girl in school,” Weiner said. It just teaches people, male and female, how to protect themselves ,but also how to accept a ‘no’.”
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