Complaints by scandalized Dietrich parents include: using the word “vagina,” and teaching different forms of birth control during a class on the reproductive system.
Tim McDaniel, a science teacher in Dietrich, Idaho, is being investigated by the Idaho Professional Standards Commission after several parents filed a complaint objecting to the way McDaniel taught the reproductive system in his 10th grade biology class. According to the Times-News,
The state investigation includes allegations that McDaniel taught sex education material in his science class, taught forms of birth control, shared confidential student files with an individual other than their parents, told inappropriate jokes and showed a video clip in class that showed a genital herpes infection.
He [McDaniel] said that the 10th grade science class includes information on birth control and sexually transmitted diseases because the school’s health teacher declines to teach the material.
“Since I started working here about 17 years ago, I agreed to teach about the reproduction system because I was comfortable with it and he wasn’t,” McDaniel said. “This is the first time someone has objected to the material … I teach straight out of the textbook, I don’t include anything that the textbook doesn’t mention. But I give every student the option not attend this class when I teach on the reproductive system if they don’t feel comfortable with the material.”
Apparently the commission is also investigating a complaint that McDaniel is “using school property to promote a political candidate.” This complaint stems from his use of the video “An Inconvenient Truth” in his science class to teach about climate change. McDaniel said that after they watch the film, the students are asked to write a short paper explaining what they learned from the movie and their thoughts on climate change.
Kate Norman, one of the parents who brought the complaint before the school board said, “As a parent, I want to be notified in advance that this content is going to be taught in class.” And although McDaniel does not feel he has done anything wrong, he has said that next year he will be sure to give parents plenty of information on all material to be taught in his class.
Dietrich Superintendent Neil Hollingshead told the Times-News that although there is an on-going investigation, McDaniel has not been suspended. He said, “It is highly unlikely it would end with his dismissal. Maybe a letter of reprimand from the school board.” But McDaniel has said that he will refuse to sign if the school board sends a letter of reprimand. He said, “It’s important to teach this to kids. Hopefully, the students are being abstinent but most of these students will be getting married a year or two after graduation and they need to know about this.”