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Even Among Democrats, Pushing Gender Ideology in Schools Is Extremely Divisive

DCNF(DCNF)—Democrats are split over whether students should be forced to learn about gender ideology at school, according to polling from the University of Southern California (USC) and Pew Research Center (PRC).

A PRC poll published Thursday found that only 53% of Democratic teachers supported a student learning that “gender can be different from their sex at birth” in K-12 schools. Additionally, while over 80% of Democrats approve of high schoolers learning about LGBTQ topics, only 44% felt that schools should discuss “gender identity vs. biological sex” with elementary students, according to a survey from USC published Wednesday.

“Our survey highlights the deep divisions about not just what children should be learning in school, but also when. Policymakers need to really think about these nuances if they are going to craft policies that reflect what Americans really want,” Morgan Polikoff, co-author of USC’s survey and associate professor of education at USC Rossier, said in a press release.

Of the survey questions asked, Democrats were least supportive of discussing transgender participation in sports, 28%, the ability for minors to get “gender-affirming care,” 28%, and having children read books that include same-sex intimate scenes, 10%. Less than half of Democratic respondents said they were in favor of schools using preferred pronouns without the knowledge of the parent, at 42%, and only 46% were comfortable with teaching “LGBTQ American history.”

Less than 25% of Democratic teachers said they felt K-12 students should be taught that they can identify as the opposite of their biological sex, according to PRC. Nearly 50% of those same teachers said that parents should be able to opt their children out of classes on sexual orientation or gender identity.

The PRC survey included 2,531 public K-12 teachers and was conducted from Oct. 17 to Nov. 14, 2023, with a margin of error at +/- 2.4 percentage points. The USC survey was conducted from Sept. 19 to Oct. 29, 2023, and included 1,763 households with at least one child in the house and 2,142 without children still at home.

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