Letter from an NPFC Member to the Novato Advance
January 22, 2003

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That's A Family

Editor: 

I want to thank the Novato Unified School District for providing the parent presentation of "That's A Family" on Jan. 9.  Unfortunately, only a small percentage of 5th grade parents/families were in attendance.  

At the Jan. 14 NUSD board meeting, I submitted a letter, signed by me, former Novato teacher E.B. Hanlein, registered nurse and former Family Life teacher Pam McCart, Kate Hoj, a 5th grade parent, and Lybe Crumpton, a 5th grade teacher, requesting that NUSD send all 5th grade parents/families the "Handout" pages from the "That's A Family" Guidebook.  The handouts, which were available on Jan. 9, contain a transcript of the key parts of the video, and will be very helpful to all 5th grade families. 

The letter also requests that a separate "opt-in" form be sent to all 5th grade parents instead of the usual "opt-out" form. Because of the controversial nature of "That's A Family," this will ensure that only those students whose parents have given their permission will be allowed to view the video and participate in any follow-up discussion.  We believe that "That's A Family" contains some material that may be offensive on racial grounds; may raise some personal or emotional issues that might not be well suited for a classroom setting; contains some material not consistent with abstinence outside of marriage; and includes some content that is not age-appropriate and/or not helpful to, or respectful of, our role as parents. 

Visit the Novato Parents & Family Coalition (NPFC) Web site at www.NovatoParents.org to see a copy of the letter and to find out more about NPFC. We welcome your comments, questions and involvement. 

Abby Wong, NPFC Representative Novato

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