Some of New York City's most elite private schools are usinig summer reading lists to push a radical agenda on children as young as five. National Review revealed that vacation reading assignments are filled with texts about young children who change gender, are transvestites, attend pride parades, secretly have abortions and question their sexuality.
Recommended texts in the lists
Among the books recommended on some schools' lists are:
- When Aidan became a brother: a book for preschoolers that describes how Aidan - born a girl - tells his parents that he felt like a boy because he "hated" the sound of his name. In revealing her new gender, the parents say they made mistakes in thinking she was a girl. Aidan also says that his new sibling - on the way to be born - should not be given a certain name and should just be a "baby."
- Julian is a mermaid: is a picture book that tells the story of a boy who wants to become a mermaid and participate in the Coney Island mermaids´ parade.
- Different kinds of fruit : a book in which a sixth grader named Annabelle discovers that her father and her new best friend are both transgender. A brief excerpt, "Together, Annabelle, Bailey and their families discover how those categories that seem to mean so much - boy, girl, gay, straight, fruit, vegetable - aren't so clear-cut after all."
- Pride Puppy: it's on several schools' lists for preschoolers, and features a puppy dog being chased by a drag queen in an LGBT parade.
- Fred gets dressed: Fred dresses up: intended for students in the first cycle of primary school. "It's a picture book of a boy who wanders around his house naked, until he goes into his parents' closet and is encouraged to get dressed. First he tries on his father's clothes, but they don't fit. Then he tries on his mother's clothes, searches through the jewelry and makeup and likes it. When his parents discover him, the whole family joins in the fun and they all dress up together." Says its description.
- If I were your girl: a book for high school students, it tells the story of a transgender teenager who comes out publicly after undergoing surgery and receiving hormones for her sex change.
- Unpregnant: for high school students, it tells the story of two girls who travel from Missouri to New Mexico to have an abortion without their parents' consent. "When seventeen-year-old Veronica realizes she is pregnant, she asks her former best friend, Bailey, to accompany her to the nearest place to get a legal abortion. (In Missouri, where she lives, you have to be 18 without parental consent).
- Gender Queer: the most challenged read of 2021 due to its high graphic content also appears on the recommended list. The book includes descriptions with images of the sexual development of its protagonist - a biological woman who identifies as asexual and gender queer. It features depictions such as a minor performing oral sex on his sister, also a minor, and the 12-year-old protagonist masturbating with the idea of having a penis. It is an autobiographical book in which the author, a transsexual, wants to share his sexual experiences with children.
- Too bright to see: for sixth graders. It tells the story of Bug, a transgender boy living in a haunted house, as he tries to understand a message a ghost is trying to send him.
Schools "proud" of their books
Among the schools that recommended these books on their summer reading lists was Nightingale-Bamford: an all-girls school where annual tuition is $59,000. When asked if the recommended books fit the school's mission, its communications director, Thomas Hein, told National Review:
The library offers our students a diverse array of prestigious and academically appropriate books that they and their parents can choose from and enjoy during the summer break and school year.
Another school that applies these readings in its summer assignments is The Chapin School: it is located on the Upper East Side and charges more than $59,000 in tuition fees per year. The school's website states that:
The affirmation stories section of this list offers just a small sample of the many important, necessary and inspiring books that have been published recently.
A private school in Brooklyn - with a tuition of more than $55,000 a year - also promotes books with explicit content for minors: Saint Ann's School. When its director, Vince Tompkins, was asked whether students should be exposed to to sexually explicit images and stories about minors who have become transsexuals, he said he was "proud" of the ibrary and school for recommending books "that span the range of human experiences and identities."