Last month while many high school students attended the first meeting of year for the drama club or pep club, a group of public high school students in Virginia attended the meeting of a Planned Parenthood club. At this club, they are being taught about abortion as a “choice,” how to engage in political activities to support pro-abortion laws, and how to keep abortion clinics open.
Students at Maggie L. Walker Governor’s School, a public high school for academically advanced students, brought a chapter of Planned Parenthood Generation Action (PPGA) to the high school. The PPGA clubs are usually reserved only for college campuses. On September 19, the school announcement, posted on Facebook, let students know that the first meeting would be held that day.
Maggie Walker’s new club “Planned Parenthood Generation Action” is holding its first meeting on Monday, September 19th in room 206. Whether you are interested in health, education, or getting community service hours this election season this club is for you.
[T]he Maggie Walker community will welcome its very own chapter to the school thanks to Kiera Goddu (‘17), Amanda Mier (‘17), and Naomi Vickers (‘17).
Goddu, Mier, and Vickers are more than enthused to bring a new experience to the student body of Maggie Walker. Goddu explained that Generation Action chapters operate by advocating for reproductive rights, keeping Planned Parenthood clinics open, offering a wide range of publicly available education services, and lobbying to remove targeted restrictions such as those imposed on abortion providers. Maggie Walker’s Generation Action club plans to meet the goals of its founders and of the Planned Parenthood organization through three primary branches.
The students have their own ties to Planned Parenthood because one of the three, Goddu, is completing a mentorship at a local Planned Parenthood. Goddu isn’t shy about wanting to bring Planned Parenthood to her fellow classmates, admitting she hopes this club can be an “extension of her work into school.” The story reports:
The other leaders are equally passionate about education and want to offer modernized and realistic reproductive health lessons to the student body of Maggie Walker. Mier’s goal for the education sector of the Generation Action club pertains to what she deems underrepresented groups. “Inclusive sex education that’s not just about…what’s between a man and a woman, but also is LGBTQ inclusive seems important,” she said.
The students are clear that the club will be discussing abortion as a “choice” at their meetings. A hope shared by the students who lead the club is that “the public perception of Planned Parenthood may change due to outreach and advocacy for the organization.” While many, perhaps those at Maggie Walker included, believe that abortion is only a small part of what Planned Parenthood does, the facts and statistics paint a very different story. Educating these students on why Planned Parenthood is not “needed” by women is important. Health care clinics that meet the needs of low-income women and their families (without performing abortion) outnumber Planned Parenthood 20 to 1, and can be found in women’s local areas.
Additionally, the high school club exists to foster Planned Parenthood focused political activities including winning elections and passing pro-abortion laws, as its own bylaws note.
The Planned Parenthood club sponsor is an English teacher at the high school Dr. Janet Spencer. Spencer is married to, F. Scott Spencer, Professor of New Testament and Biblical Interpretation at the Baptist Theological Seminary at Richmond. A Baptist preacher and scholar, Spencer dubs himself a “male feminist biblical scholar.”
Thus, Dr. Janet Spencer, wife of the Baptist preacher and scholar, is the sponsor of this pro-abortion club in an unlikely location — Virginia. There are basic problems that can arise when a public high school promotes a club that advances the cause of the nation’s largest abortion provider and gives biased education about abortion. But, in the state of Virginia, there’s something else: minors cannot get an abortion without parental consent or judicial bypass. Of course, Planned Parenthood is more than happy to tell minors that it’s possible to side-step parental guidance and garner a judicial bypass. Planned Parenthood notes:
Your state requires that one of your parents or a grandparent or adult sibling with whom you live give permission for your abortion, and separately that one parent or a grandparent or adult sibling with whom you live be told of your decision 24 hours before the abortion takes place. A judge can excuse you from both of these requirements.
The real question here, then, is why — particularly in a state where parental consent is needed for minors to obtain an abortion — a public high school is promoting abortion and political activities that advance Planned Parenthood’s agenda? That’s a question that can only be answered by school and district administrators.