Sex educator Shelly Donahue, above, will never again get to address youngsters at Jenks Public Schools in Oklahoma after her faith-based advice sparked outrage among students.
According to this report, Donahue, who is “passionately committed to Jesus Christ as the ultimate answer to the teen sexual activity problem in America“, recently gave a talk that was “demeaning” to girls and “belittled” broken families.
One Jenks High School senior posted on Facebook demanding an explanation for the presentation from Shelly Donahue, who was contracted to speak in an assembly with the school’s entire senior class.
In the post, which has been shared more than 800 times, Brooklyn Wilson, right, revealed that Donahue asked her audience:
Do you know why girls are so desperate and always text guys first? Two words: Daddy. left.
Said an angry Wilson:
How dare our school allow a statement so demeaning to girls and so belittling of broken families to be presented to a class of such impressionable and already insecure seniors. Daddy leaving is a life changing and heartbreaking situation, but to stereotype and undermine girls by calling them ‘desperate’ for having the confidence to text a guy first is SO OUT OF LINE.
The intent of the assembly was to fulfill a state requirement to share information with students about HIV and AIDS, said Rob Loeber, a spokesman for the school district.
It was Jenks’ first time to contract with Donahue, and the agreement was that she would give an educational presentation about AIDS, Loeber said.
High school administrators spoke to Donahue about the content of her presentation before the assembly, Loeber said
But unfortunately, some of the content and the tone of the presentation did not meet the expectations of JHS administrators.
In another Facebook post, Wilson shared a photo of a slide from the presentation that reads
Sexually speaking: men are like microwaves; women are like crock pots.
She added in that post that the presentation was run by a Christian organisation, which she called an inappropriate and “ignorant violation” of students’ varying beliefs.
Loeber said that although Donahue’s website indicates that she presents a Christian-based programme:
There is also mention of a specific secular programme which can be implemented for use at public schools. She gave assurances to our administrators that her presentation would be secular, not religious. Regrettably, she did not adhere to those standards. Some of her comments strayed outside the realm of sex education or AIDS education. Those statements certainly would not be echoed or endorsed by Jenks Public Schools. Because of those misrepresentations, Ms. Donahue will not be asked to return.
An unrealistic and ineffective approach to teaching safe sex.
Loeber said Oklahoma statutes dictate that any school that provides sex education must ensure that one of its primary purposes shall be to educate students on the practice of abstinence.
Wilson added that she was
Genuinely so upset and let down by a school I gave my trust and faith to.
Hermant Mehta, The Friendly Atheist, lambasted the school authorities for inviting this Christian imbecile:
There’s simply no excuse for the administrators here. Donahue never hid her ignorance from the public. They saw her website, full of myths and inaccuracies and stereotypes, and invited her anyway.
What the hell were they thinking? How did they not know?!
The administrators didn’t just waste students’ time. They paid for a speaker who perpetuated false, harmful information about sex at a time in these students’ lives when evidence-based information is exactly what they need to hear.
The statements by Rob Loeber suggest that Donahue lied to them. That she misrepresented her intentions. That the talk she gave was different from the talk she said she would give.
That’s just not true. I can’t believe I’m defending her here, but Donahue made very clear what she was going to talk about ahead of time. Christians gonna Christian.
The reality is that the administrators, having all this information at their disposal, invited Donahue despite all the glaring red flags.
Who’s taking responsibility for this? Where’s the apology from the District? What steps are they taking to prevent this from ever happening again?
I’ve filed an open records request with the District to see if we can pinpoint who invited her and why. There’s no shortage of excellent speakers on this subject, yet the school invited someone patently unqualified. People in the community, included the students, deserve to know why.