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National Education Association Releases LGBTQ+ Toolkit Encouraging Use of Non-binary Pronouns”

The National Education Association (NEA), the country’s largest teachers’ union, has launched an LGBTQ+ toolkit that aggressively advocates for the dismantling of what it terms “systems of oppression”. The toolkit instructs educators to abstain from “assuming pronouns”, representing another step in the ongoing politicization of the education system with views not universally accepted.

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The toolkit encompasses a range of resources, including LGBTQ+ training, book recommendations, guidance links, and even a guide on pronoun usage that ventures into territory such as gender-neutral options and less commonly-used pronouns. This push for embracing gender non-specific pronouns, including non-traditional forms like ze/zim/zir, is presented as crucial for the health and well-being of transgender and gender-diverse individuals.

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In addition to the resources, the toolkit includes a six-part training series for educators. This training is designed to address supposed biases around sexual orientation and gender identity, and the inclusion of an “intersectional focus on racial justice” feels like a clear departure from the core mandate of an educational institution.

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This latest move comes on the heels of a series of polarizing stances from the NEA, including their recent backing of the Gay, Lesbian, and Straight Education Network (GLSEN). This organization, which promotes the incorporation of specific gender ideologies into K-12 classrooms, also provides sample district policies that limit parental insight into their child’s school-based gender identity. 

In the face of criticism, GLSEN has accused “right-wing extremists” of spreading misinformation about their organization. Meanwhile, NEA’s President Becky Pringle has expressed unflinching support for the group. Pringle’s stance is that she is dedicated to supporting all students, regardless of their gender or identity. However, there is a question about the balance between promoting inclusivity and pushing a particular ideological agenda within the education system.

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