Virginia Regulatory Town Hall
Department of Education
State Board of Education
Guidance Document Change: The guidance document "Model Policies Concerning Instructional Materials with Sexually Explicit Content" was developed in conjunction with stakeholders in order to comply with SB656 (2022).
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7/15/22  2:39 pm
Commenter: Kelly Wagner

Opposed to the Proposed Model Policies

My name is Kelly Wagner and I live in Alexandria, VA. I have serious concerns about the the VDOE’s model policies concerning instructional materials with “sexually explicit content,” a broadly vague term that could be applied to important works of literature like Beloved by Toni Morrison or Ulysses by James Joyce. As a Virginia resident and former student in the Prince William County school district, I believe that classrooms should be a place where student are free to ask questions, explore new ideas, and learn about diverse viewpoints. I do not think that parents should be able to make demands of teachers and librarians based on their individual viewpoint of what constitutes "sexually explicit content."  Teachers, librarians, and education experts have years of experience and are well equipped to introduce diverse and sometimes difficult subjects into the classroom while mitigating the harm and trauma these subjects may cause their students. They are trained professionals whose jobs are to put the students’ interests first. The proposed model policies would make it harder for these educators to do their job and will likely result in censorship. For this reason, I am opposed to the proposed model policies.

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