American College of Pediatricians – August 2008
ABSTRACT: School officials are being increasingly pressured by pro-homosexual organizations to integrate homosexual education into school curricula. These organizations recommend promoting homosexuality as a normal, immutable trait that should be validated during childhood, as early as kindergarten. These organizations also condemn all efforts to provide treatment to gender confused students, advocating instead the creation of student groups that affirm homosexual attractions and behaviors.
One of the most coordinated efforts to convince school officials to embrace this position was launched by a coalition of 13 organizations, which produced a brochure entitled Just the Facts about Sexual Orientation and Youth. This coalition, which includes the American Academy of Pediatrics, American Psychiatric Association, and the National Education Association, mailed the brochure in January 2008 to all 16,000 public school superintendents in the United States. The purpose of the brochure is to:
- Promote the notion that all forms of sexual attraction among students (regardless of age) are equally and entirely normal, including heterosexuality, homosexuality and bisexuality.
- Inform educators that all sexual-reorientation therapy may be harmful and should be prohibited.
- Warn school officials that student clubs advocating the practice of homosexuality must be allowed on campus.
The American College of Pediatricians disagrees with the coalition and presents this scientific response:
- The etiology of homosexual attraction is determined by a combination of familial, environmental, and social influences. For some individuals the inheritance of predisposing personality traits may also play a role.
- While homosexual attraction may not be a conscious choice, it is changeable for many individuals.
- Declaring and validating a student’s same-sex attraction during the adolescent years is premature and may be harmful.
- Many youth with homosexual attractions have experienced a troubled upbringing, including sexual abuse, and are in need of therapy.
- The homosexual lifestyle carries grave health risks.
- Sexual reorientation therapy can be effective. Students and parents should be aware of all therapeutic options.
- There is no evidence that pro-homosexual programs, such as on-campus student clubs, ease the health disorders of homosexual youth.
- The Just the Facts brochure is based upon statements of endorsement of adolescent homosexuality by coalition organizations, and not upon citations of evidence-based research.
Regardless of an individual’s sexual orientation, sexual activity is conscious choice. Any sexual activity outside of a monogamous, heterosexual, married relationship is unhealthy and ill-advised.
The American College of Pediatricians is a national medical association of licensed physicians and healthcare professionals who specialize in the care of infants, children, and adolescents. The mission of the College is to enable all children to reach their optimal, physical and emotional health and well-being. More information is available at www.BestforChildren.org.
The above statements are supported by the following documents:
“Homosexual Parenting: Is It Time For Change?” by the American College of Pediatricians
“Empowering Parents of Gender Discordant and Same-Sex Attracted Children” by the American College of Pediatricians
“NARTH Response to Just the Facts about Sexual Orientation and Youth” by National Association for Research & Therapy of Homosexuality
“Homosexuality in Your Child’s School” by Family Research Council
“A Response to the APA Factsheet” by Oleary, Byrd, Fitzgibbons, & Phelan