Against the grain, this California school district’s resolution protects student free speech, traditional gender-specific language

The National Education Association might be considering doing away with such terms as “mother” and “father,” but this California school district is having none of that. 

The Paso Robles…

The National Education Association might be considering doing away with such terms as “mother” and “father,” but this California school district is having none of that. 

The Paso Robles Joint Unified School District approved a resolution Tuesday preemptively declaring it won’t bend to anyone else’s mandate to change traditional gender-specific labels “such as mother and father, Mr. and Mrs., ladies and gentlemen, and boys and girls.” 

The NEA this summer considered, but did not yet adopt, its own resolution encouraging the use of such terms as “birthing parent” for mothers and “non-birthing parent” for fathers, Paso Robles School Board President Chris Arend told Fox News Digital.

The Paso Robles school board is now on record standing against such dictates. 

The San Luis Obispo Tribune opined in an editorial, headlined “Relax, Paso school board. No one is trying to outlaw gendered words like Mr. and Mrs.,” that the board’s resolution was “a bizarre, totally unnecessary move” and “a gross overreaction” to the NEA proposal. 

Yet, evidence at the Paso Robles meeting itself would seem to refute those assertions: As just one opponent of the board’s resolution argued, “The only way to treat all persons with respect and dignity would be to use the title and the pronoun requested by that individual.” 

Moreover, if no one’s coming for traditional gender-specific labels, then why were a majority of citizens at the Paso Robles meeting against the board’s resolution to maintain such terms? 

Arend maintains his board’s resolution is “not an attack on anybody.” Rather, he said it’s to protect freedom of speech. 

Tyler Ohta, founder of Moms for American Values, agrees, telling Fox News that “to hold little children culpable, responsible for someone else’s personal decision, compelling their speech at such a young age, it’s a very dangerous path that we’re going down, and we need to defend our free speech and our religious beliefs.” 

“As is often the case,” says Arend, “people, instead of reading the resolution, decide to use it as an excuse to get bent out of shape. It was very a minimalistic resolution to say we want to allow people to use ‘ladies and gentlemen.’ We will reject any mandates that try to replace those.” 

Such a stance protects young students, as well: Parents in Fairfax, Virginia, have strongly opposed efforts there to punish students for “misgendering” or “deadnaming” trans students by not using the names and pronouns the trans students say they prefer. The Fairfax school board voted in June to punish students as young as fourth grade for “malicious misgendering” of their peers. 

That won’t happen anytime soon in Paso Robles.  

And neither will the teaching of Critical Race Theory. As Fox News reported, the school board previously approved a resolution to drastically prune CRT in its schools, declaring, “Critical race theory is a divisive ideology that assigns moral fault to individuals solely on the basis of an individual’s race and, therefore, is itself a racist ideology.” 

“I find critical race theory to be just an absolutely disgustingly racist ideology that has been developed with the intention of really driving a wedge between various groups in America, various ethnic groups, and to use that to absolutely ruin our nation. Very simple,” Arend said in a statement at the time, according to Fox.