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Op-ED Enfield Mother

When the school year ended on June 22, The Board of Education in Enfield, Connecticut
successfully ignored concerned parents for 134 days. Despite repeated requests from parents, the Board has refused to explain how an assignment about sex and pizza found its way into JFK
Middle School. 

On January 13th an 8th-grade health teacher handed out an assignment to students labeled “Pizza and Consent”. The assignment immediately starts by stating pizza can be used as a metaphor for sex. It goes on to encourage the children to draw or color their “favorite pizza toppings” in relation to sex acts. The examples provided aren’t even appropriate to publish in this article, yet they were appropriate for middle-schoolers? These children were asked to write down their sexual wants and desires and turn the answers into the teacher.

Let’s be very clear here: a teacher asked minors to write their sexual preferences on paper and
hand it in. Since when is it ok for any adult to ask this of a child? If a teacher pulled a student
aside and asked them these questions, they would be fired, but when a teacher asks the class
collectively then it’s ok? The legal age of consent in Connecticut is sixteen, these children were
thirteen. Is asking them to answer these questions even legal? Is it legal as long as it is under the
guise of a “state-mandated curriculum?”

The Enfield Board of Education seems to be satisfied with such an explanation. One board
member stated that this assignment stemmed from the state's curriculum. So that begs the
question, who at the state level thinks that asking underage children their sexual preferences is
educational, let alone appropriate? What kind of people control what our kids learn every

Parents demanded answers from the Board of Education: Where did this assignment come from?
How did it make get into the curriculum in the first place? Is this mandated by the state? Who
paid for it? And most importantly, what other questionable assignments are in our curriculum?
Not only has the Board failed to answer any of these questions, but our Governor, Ned Lamont,
has also failed to make any comment about this assignment, despite it making international

By ignoring the issue, Governor Lamont is implying that the over-sexualization of kids in public
schools is not his responsibility or worthy of his attention. The Governor’s Department of
Education is responsible for the guidelines that mandate middle school children be taught
consent as a foundational principle in their health and sexuality unit. The state spends billions of
our local, state, and federal tax dollars each year to fund our public education. We are left to
assume that these are the funds used to purchase the egregious curriculum plans and materials.
Which then poses another question: which other towns have this assignment or assignments like
it in their curriculum? So many questions, so few answers. 

If the state played no role in sourcing this assignment, Governor Lamont would have already said
so, especially since the story went viral producing plenty of news coverage. If he didn't agree, he
would have denounced this type of assignment immediately. His silence speaks louder than
words, if this wasn’t something he had a hand in, he would have told us exactly where the
assignment was produced and how it made its way to Enfield. He would also ensure that the
company involved in the production of the material was no longer working with the public schools in Connecticut, and make efforts to put safeguards in state curriculum guidelines to prevent inappropriate material from showing up in any public school. 


Governor Lamont has done nothing. He has ignored concerned parents just like the Enfield
School Board, leaving all of us with more questions than answers and our children vulnerable to
the next inappropriate, borderline illegal assignment.


I never thought I would be kept in the dark about my children's education, that I would sit in
front of an elected body, asking valid questions only to be completely ignored. But
unfortunately, situations like these seem to be happening more often in our state and across the
country. As a mom looking for answers, I’m grateful to Parents Against Stupid Stuff for giving
me a platform to continue to call on Governor Lamont to Investigate Enfield’s “Pizza and

Amanda Marquez
Enfield Mom
Parents Against Stupid Stuff

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