Catholic School Thinks Second Grade Is The Right Time To Learn About ‘Fornication’

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A is for adultery, B is for birth control, C is for holy crap. On a scale from 1 to 10, how upset would you be if your second-grader brought home a pamphlet that asked if they had sinfully committed ‘fornication’ or ‘sodomy’? I’m think somewhere around a 35.

Students in the second through sixth grades at Star of the Sea, a California Catholic school, were given a pamphlet listing out a few choice sins before a trip to confession. The sins listed weren’t really garden-variety second-grader stuff like ‘I shoved Suzy on the playground’ or ‘I coveted my neighbor’s action figures’, though. Instead, the San Francisco Chronicle reports, the line of questioning went more like this:

They asked questions such as, “Did I perform impure acts by myself (masturbation) or with another (adultery, fornication and sodomy)?” and, “Did I practice artificial birth control or was I or my spouse prematurely sterilized (tubal ligation or vasectomy)?” as well as, “Have I had or advised anyone to have an abortion?”

Yeah, as I’ve said, I plan to talk to my kids about the stuff that’s out there, but I think most parents are hoping are hoping we don’t have to explain the very loaded subject of ‘fornication’ (not sex, but fornication, mind) quite yet when our kids are eight years old.

I’m all for sex education at a young age, but this isn’t exactly what I had in mind. Couching a student’s educational introduction to the subject in these terms (impure!) isn’t remotely healthy. I know this is Catholic doctrine, and they’re allowed to believe what they want–I just don’t understand how anyone could think this is an appropriate doctrinal activity for elementary school kids. Excuse me, let me rephrase that: I don’t understand how anyone who isn’t a creepazoid or a sanctimonious lunatic could think this is an appropriate activity. Is this school run by the villain from the Disney version of Hunchback of Notre Dame?


Plus, can I just add that this is spectacularly lazy? I used to be a teacher and of course we all have days where we just Xeroxed a worksheet to hand out, but come on–at least read the stupid thing first. Someone here obviously just copy-pasted an adult confession checklist into a pamphlet and stamped “For kids!” on it and called it a day. If that’s the best effort you can muster as a teacher, maybe you don’t really belong in a classroom.