While companies such as Target are under fire for featuring LGBT children’s attire, other groups and organizations are attempting to create “LGBTQ+ affirming” schools.
One of these groups is GSafe, an organization with the goal of creating “schools for LGBTQ+ youth in Wisconsin.”
Concerns about the organization’s training materials were shared on Friday by Scarlett Johnson, a county chapter president of Moms for Liberty in Wisconsin.
Johnson tweeted an image of a title slide from “professional development training” sponsored by GSafe and “promoted by the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction,” she wrote.
The slide contains a QR code leading to a public Google drive appearing to contain training materials to assist individuals on how to create “LGBTQ+ Affirming Elementary Schools.”
These materials include various guides and videos, including a checklist from Welcoming Schools on recommendations for a “welcoming and inclusive school environment,” as well as two videos of five-year-old and nine-year old children who identify as transgender.
It also includes the full presentation of the image Johnson shared in her tweet.
The presentation includes a section on how to respond to “anti-LGBTQ” questions and statement, such as, “Elementary is far too early for kids to learn about LGBTQ+ topics;” “He says he has two moms. You can’t have two moms!” and “My dad says being trans is wrong. What do you think?”
In another slide, the “Developmental Stages & the Transgender Child” starts with the age of 2. It also suggests 2-3-year-olds can identify the “gender” of toys and certain clothes, seek out same-sex role models “matching their inner sense of gender,” and even “announce” differences of their biological sex and “what they feel and know about their gender identity.”
The presentation also provides suggestions for creating an LGBT-inclusive curriculum and what to do when families are not yet “supportive” of their child’s identity.
Brian Juchems, who uploaded the materials, is the co-executive director of GSafe. He is also one of the creators of the Leadership Training Institute, a summer training camp for high school students to become “activists, allies, and agents of change.” Juchems is an activist himself, involved with passing the state’s “first district-level transgender-inclusive nondiscrimination policy” in 2005, his bio says.
Juchems also appears to have held a training on April 26 called “Navigating District LGBTQ+ Policies to Support Students,” and he recently received the Virginia Uribe Award for Creative Leadership in Human Rights for the Community Shares of Wisconsin’s fundraising program, The Big Share.
The group’s training materials come to light as the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction has begun actively promoting Pride Month books and events on its Facebook page.
The Lion reached out to Moms for Liberty for comment but did not receive a response before publication.