By Greg Bishop | The Center Square Jul 11, 2022

(The Center Square) – An Illinois parents’ rights group is advocating for parents to opt their children out of controversial sex ed courses.

Awake Illinois founder Shannon Adcock said with the signing of Senate Bill 818 last year, Illinois became the first state to align sex ed standards with a national group’s curriculm.

“When you look at the breakdown of the K-12 guidelines in the standards, they’re far more in my opinion graphic and worrisome,” Adcock told The Center Square.

Gov. J.B. Pritzker signed Senate Bill 818 last year that aligns the state’s sex ed standards with the National Sex Education Standards. If a district teaches sex ed, they have to follow the standards.

“Modernizing our sex education standards will help keep our children safe and ensure important lessons like consent and internet safety are taught in classrooms,” Pritzker said after signing the bill last year. “By working together, we’ll continue to strengthen our education system and deliver the bright future our kids deserve.”

Supporters of the updated standards say the breakdown per grade level is age appropriate and important to educate children about the issues.

“No student should feel stigmatized or excluded in the classroom,” state Sen. Ram Villivalam, D-Chicago, said last year. “This legislation puts forth guidelines for an inclusive, culturally competent curriculum to keep students safe and healthy.”

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