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Pro-adoption stickers in Arizona school textbooks raise eyebrows

This sticker, placed inside some honors biology textbooks in Gilbert, Arizona, is raising eyebrows online. (Twitter Photo/@suzanne_young)

PHOENIX — A Phoenix-area school’s decision to put stickers urging adoption over abortion inside honors biology textbooks is raising a few eyebrows.

MSNBC was first to report the stickers were being placed inside the books in Gilbert.

In 2014, Gilbert Public Schools board members voted to rip out pages of a biology textbook that mentioned abortion. They argued Arizona state law stated childbirth and adoption be taught as the preferred option to abortion. The decision drew criticism and was later reversed after Superintendent Christina Kishimoto reached a compromise — the stickers — with the board.

Kishimoto told MSNBC she wanted to compromise because she worried students would turn to non-reliable places to get information.

“The board and I have full confidence in our teachers and because we trust the way our teachers instruct, we agreed that this is the best course of action,” she told KTAR News in a statement.

On Tuesday, Suzanne Young, a children’s author and mother that lives in Gilbert, tweeted that her son was required to place one of the stickers in his textbook.

https://twitter.com/suzanne_young/status/634134917769654272

The sticker reads in full:

The Gilbert Public School District supports the state of Arizona’s strong interest in promoting childbirth and adoption over elective abortion. The District is also in support of promoting abstinence as the most effective way to eliminate the potential for unwanted pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases. If you have questions concerning sexual intercourse, contraceptives, pregnancy, adoption or abortion, we encourage you to speak with your parents.

It is unknown which schools use the book and which required the stickers.

Young told BuzzFeed News the sticker makes unsafe assumptions.

“The public school district has taken an educational text and used it to teach morality,” she said. “It assumes that all students have supportive parents to talk to and shuts down further discussion. It shames and isolates girls before supplying them with information and biological facts.”

The Arizona Department of Education said it was unaware of the stickers as textbooks are a locally-made decision.

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