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Md. Health Program Blocked Over Curriculum


— May 6, 2005

GREENBELT, Md. — A federal judge has blocked a county school system from instituting a new health curriculum that includes discussions of homosexuality and religion and a demonstration on how to use condoms.

U.S. District Judge Alexander Williams issued a temporary restraining order Thursday that prevents the Montgomery County school system in suburban Washington, D.C., from using the pilot program in six schools.

The program had been scheduled to begin Monday. During the 10-day restraining order, another hearing will be held on whether to extend it, the judge said.

But school Superintendent Jerry D. Weast said in a statement after the ruling that he was suspending use of the curriculum for the rest of the school year and had ordered a review of its materials before deciding the future of the program.

Williams agreed with two groups that filed a lawsuit claiming the curriculum’s discussion of homosexuality amounted to preferential treatment for religions that preach tolerance of homosexuality over those that reject it.

For example, the curriculum juxtaposes faiths such as Quakers and Unitarians that support full rights for homosexuals with groups such as Baptists, who are painted as “intolerant and biblically misguided,” the judge wrote in his opinion.

“The court is extremely troubled by the willingness of the defendants to venture, or perhaps more correctly, bound, into the crossroads of controversy where religion, morality and homosexuality converge,” Williams wrote.

Details here from the AP via the heraldsun.com.


GREENBELT, Md. — A federal judge has blocked a county school system from instituting a new health curriculum that includes discussions of homosexuality and religion and a demonstration on how to use condoms.

U.S. District Judge Alexander Williams issued a temporary restraining order Thursday that prevents the Montgomery County school system in suburban Washington, D.C., from using the pilot program in six schools.

The program had been scheduled to begin Monday. During the 10-day restraining order, another hearing will be held on whether to extend it, the judge said.

But school Superintendent Jerry D. Weast said in a statement after the ruling that he was suspending use of the curriculum for the rest of the school year and had ordered a review of its materials before deciding the future of the program.

Williams agreed with two groups that filed a lawsuit claiming the curriculum’s discussion of homosexuality amounted to preferential treatment for religions that preach tolerance of homosexuality over those that reject it.

For example, the curriculum juxtaposes faiths such as Quakers and Unitarians that support full rights for homosexuals with groups such as Baptists, who are painted as “intolerant and biblically misguided,” the judge wrote in his opinion.

“The court is extremely troubled by the willingness of the defendants to venture, or perhaps more correctly, bound, into the crossroads of controversy where religion, morality and homosexuality converge,” Williams wrote.

Details here from the AP via the heraldsun.com.

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