School Board Policy 606 - Appendix C Controversial Issues

Adopted: June 10, 2013
Revised: May 10, 2021

Controversial issues may be discussed in the classroom, provided that: 

1. The issue is related to the course of study or to relevant current events and provides opportunities for critical thinking, for developing empathy, and for understanding conflicting points of view. 

2. The issue has a meaningful relationship to matters of concern to the students. 

3. Available information about the issue is sufficient to allow alternative points of view to be discussed and evaluated on a factual basis. 

4. All sides of the issue are given a proper hearing, using established facts as primary evidence. 

5. The issue has points of view which can be understood and defined by the students. 

6. The teacher does not use their position to forward their own religious, political, economic or social bias. The teacher may express a personal opinion if they identify it as such and does not express the opinion for the purpose of persuading students to their point of view. 

7. Discussion or study of the issue is instigated by the students, relevant current events, and the established curriculum, but not by a source outside of the schools. 

8. The discussion does not reflect adversely upon persons because of race, color, creed, religion, national origin, sex, age, marital status, familial status, status with regard to public assistance, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or disability. (see Policy 413). 

9. The oral or written presentation does not violate state or federal law. The director of curriculum and instruction will have the authority to judge whether the above conditions are being met.