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Appleman Weighs in on Anoka-Hennepin School District GLBT Issue in Pioneer Press

August 13, 2011

Deborah Appleman, the Hollis L. Caswell Professor of Educational Studies, was quoted in the Aug. 13 edition of the Pioneer Press on a story entitled "Anoka-Hennepin school district stands by gay 'neutrality' policy." The policy forbids teachers and staff, to "remain neutral on matters regarding sexual orientation including but not limited to student led discussions." Two lawsuits have been filed to strike down the policy, according to the Pioneer Press. The push for change in some ways mirrors the battle fought by minority groups to be better represented in schools and reflected in curricula,  Appleman, told the paper. "The majority of schools are a mechanism that...reproduces mainstream society," Appleman said. A call for "neutrality" on LGBT issues really means the prevailing philosophies of the majority - heterosexuals - dominate in school culture and curriculum, she said. "It is only when people at the margins call for change...that we've seen diversification of the curriculum," she said.