(CNSNews.com) – The Chicago School Board is poised to approve a taxpayer-funded public school designed to provide what some call “a safe haven” for homosexual students.
The Social Justice High School - Pride Campus, slated to open in 2010, will incorporate lessons in sexual identity into its history and literature curricula.
Conservative critics, however, charge that it will serve as an indoctrination center for homosexual activists to reach public school students at taxpayer expense.
The proposed school is part of Renaissance 2010 -- a Chicago Public Schools initiative begun in 2005 with the aim of creating 100 new public schools by 2010.
The idea was proposed by “education entrepreneurs,” according to Jaime Guzman, director of external affairs for the Chicago School District’s Office of New Schools.
“We think that there’s going to be a demand for students across the city that are interested in a college prep high school focused on social justice that creates a safe space for all students, absolutely,” Guzman told CNSNews.com.
Guzman said that male homosexual and lesbian students often meet with social challenges at regular public schools, which prove to be decisive obstacles to their education.
The school will be open to all, but will cater to homosexual, transgender and bisexual students. Guzman said that Social Justice High will conduct partnerships with health groups, mental-health organizations, and social service agencies to provide its students with social and emotional support.
Along with normal classes, like English and math, the school’s literature and history curricula will feature notable homosexual and lesbian figures, along with lectures on sexual identity.
However, Peter LaBarbera, president of Americans for Truth About Homosexuality, a Naperville (Ill.)-based organization, charges that the school’s homosexual-themed lessons will be one-sided propaganda.
“They [the students] won’t be told forthrightly about the risks of homosexual behavior,” LaBarbera told CNSNews.com. “They’ll be taught this propagandistic version of safer sex that is taught. They won’t be told of the historic moral opposition to homosexual behavior.”
LaBarbera said there is a very powerful homosexual movement in Chicago – and the proposed school is a reflection of what he calls the school district’s “egregious pandering” to the homosexual agenda.
When asked how he knew the curriculum at the school would promote a pro-homosexual agenda, LaBarbera replied, “We’re (already) seeing it in regular schools” in Chicago through comprehensive sex-ed classes.
Many of the sexually confused kids that would attend the school come from abusive and troubled backgrounds, noted LaBarbera.
“They’ll be confirmed in their confusion, and they won’t get the other side,” he said.
“I think every person who’s sexually confused or gender confused should know that there are thousands of ex-gays -- former homosexuals -- out there in our society who are living contented, happy lives.”
Laurie Higgins of the conservative Illinois Family Institute (IFI), meanwhile, questioned why a public school supportive of homosexuality is appropriate. .
“No public school official would recommend or allow a school for polyamorous teens, even to make them safe,” she told CNSNews.com.
(Polyamory involves sexual, emotional and romantic attraction to multiple people at the same time.)
“The fact that (the school district) would do so for the homosexual movement,” Higgins said, “means they have come to conclusions about the nature and morality of homosexuality.”
Advancing homosexuality, she said, should not be the province of public schools.
“Biology is not destiny,” Higgins said. “You can make behavior choices that oppose your impulses.”
The proposed school awaits final approval by the Chicago Board of Education, which is set to consider the matter on Oct. 22.