A Vermont elementary school announced it would no longer use “male” or “female” when teaching fifth-grade students about puberty and human reproductive systems in its science classes.
Families of students at Founders Memorial School in Essex Junction, Vermont, received a letter (pdf) on April 20 informing them of the changes.
School Principal Sara Jablonski said the decision to use “gender inclusive language” fits into the Essex Westford School District’s “equity policy.”
“It is time for our science/health unit about the human body focused on puberty and the human reproductive systems,” the letter opened, referring to the school’s reproductive systems lessons.
“We will focus on the physical and emotional changes that occur during puberty and briefly introduce the basic structure and function of human reproductive systems,” the letter continued.
However, instead of referring to someone as a “boy” or “male,” teachers will use the term “person who produces sperm.” Instead of the words “girl” or “female,” they will use “person who produces eggs.”
The letter said worksheets and handouts were being rewritten to incorporate the changes but warned that some may still need to be changed.
“If you are interested in seeing the materials teachers will be using, we will have a binder available in the main office for you to review,” the letter concluded.
The letter was shared on Twitter by Erika Sanzi, director of parents’ rights group Parents Defending Education (PDE), a non-profit “working to reclaim our schools from activists imposing harmful agendas.”
“New language rules just dropped for 5th graders in Vermont, and they don’t include the words boy and girl or male and female,” she tweeted.
Public reactions were primarily adverse, with some comparing the curated language to Aldous Huxley’s novel “Brave New World” while others alluded to the concept of “newspeak” from George Orwell’s “1984.”
Others found the new terms “dehumanizing,” “ridiculous,” and “weird.”
Someone asked, “What is a ‘person that produces eggs’ post menopause when that person no longer produces eggs?”
“All this palaver, fed to kids who haven’t reached puberty yet. To what end?” another asked.
A PDE spokesperson told Fox News Digital: “Speaking about anyone in this way is dehumanizing in any context, but these new language rules specifically apply to a health unit for 5th graders about puberty and reproduction.”
“It is clear that the school has decided to be derelict in their [sic] duty to educate students in the name of equity. If anyone is wondering what it looks like when an elementary school has been captured by gender ideology, this is it.”