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Trans Toddlers, Gay Grandads, Teen Abortions: The Stunning Reading List at Top NY Private Schools


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Some of New York's top private schools recommended books for their students' summer reading lists that explore abortion, gender transition for children, homosexual relationships, and cross-dressing.

According to National Review, Nightingale-Bamford, the Chapin School, and Saint Ann's School in New York, New York, recommended books to kids as young as five-years-old that celebrate toddlers becoming transgender, LGBTQ relationships, and teens traveling across state lines to receive abortions.

Nightingale-Bamford is an all-girls school, located in Manhattan, that recommended kindergarteners should read books like  When Aidan Became a Brother, a story about a girl who changed her gender when she was a toddler; Grandad's Camper, a story about a grandfather telling his granddaughter about his travels with his lover; and Julian Is a Mermaid, a book about a boy who is celebrated when he chooses to dress in a skirt, flower crown, and necklace.

Nightingale-Bamford neglects to describe to students that Aidan is a transgender character, but says he is experiencing "complicated emotions" and "works hard" to make sure his baby brother is welcomed "in as inclusive a way possible."

The school also suggests Bodies Are Cool as a reading recommendation. Characters in the picture book adopt the plural pronoun "they" and the author says it is "just the beginning in this truly inclusive book."

Nightingale-Bamford also recommends Melissa to third-graders. The book by Alex Gino is about a boy named George who comes out as transgender.

"When people look at Melissa, they think they see a boy named George. But she knows she's not a boy. She knows she's a girl," the school writes of the book. "Melissa thinks she'll have to keep this a secret forever, until an opportunity arises that challenges her to be who she is for all to see."

As CBN News has reported, students at Westland Middle School in Maryland were encouraged to read a pro-LGBT book by Alex Gina, called Rick.

Rick is about a 12-year-old boy who is encouraged to question his sexual orientation and gender identity. Another child undergoes a gender transition, a third kid dances as a drag queen, and Rick's grandfather reveals he likes to crossdress.

Westland Middle School students were asked to complete assignments based on the reading. CBN News reached out to the school to inquire if the students were given other options. A spokesperson for Montgomery County Public Schools said the reading and assignments were optional. 

"This assignment does not impact students' grades whether they choose to participate or not," they added.

Meanwhile, The Chapin School, an all-girls school in Manhattan, has also recommended similar books to students. 

Lower school students, which are kids as young as seven-years-old, were offered "affirming stories" like Fred Gets Dressed and Calvin

The school describes the "affirming stories" section as books that "encourage children to accept, appreciate, celebrate, and find joy in themselves, their families, and their communities."

In Fred Gets Dressed, Fred walks around his house naked until he stumbles into his mother's closet and puts on her clothes and makeup. 

The school describes the book as a "charming and humorous story" that highlights nontraditional gender roles and self-expression.

The description of Calvin, based on the school's website, reads, "Calvin has always been a boy, even if the world sees him as a girl. He knows who he is in his heart and in his mind but he hasn't yet told his family. Finally, he can wait no longer..."

The Chapin School recommended "longer", "more sophisticated", and "adventurous" content to its sixth-grade students, including Gino's Melissa and Different Kinds of Fruit, which chronicles a young girl's discovery of her father's sexual identity. 

High school students at Saint Ann's School, a private school in Brooklyn, were recommended Unpregnant, a book in which a young girl travels to New Mexico to get an abortion without her parent's consent, NR reports.

The school describes the book as "funny, heartfelt, and incredibly timely." 

The school also suggested Gender Queer, the No. 1 most challenged book in the U.S., according to the American Library Association, because it is "considered to have sexually explicit images."

Saint Ann's describes the book as a "powerful perspective that is brought to life with beautiful illustrations."

But a Kentucky mom argued that the book was pornographic.

"Accepting and loving children does not mean putting pornography in their hands," Miranda Stowall said at a meeting challenging the book, Fox News reported.

Saint Ann's headmaster, Vince Tompkins, told NR, he was "proud" of the school's librarians for recommending books "that embrace the range of human experience and identities."

"Our mission statement at Saint Ann's School states, in part, that at our school, 'unfettered by grades, teachers and students embark on journeys of discovery in which the arts are central.' Through an ambitious curriculum and a culture of inquiry, we question the world. We invite each other to take risks, pursue knowledge for its own sake, and celebrate growth," Tompkins said.

"Saint Ann's is an independent school, chosen by families and by those who teach and work here because they know that we are not subject to the urges of politicians and zealots who seek to restrict what teachers can teach and say and what books we choose for our library shelves," Tompkins added.

At the time of publication, school representative's from Nightingale-Bamford and the Chapin School have not responded to requests for comments. 

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About The Author


Talia Wise has served as a multi-media producer for, CBN Newswatch, The Prayer Link, and CBN News social media outlets. Prior to joining CBN News she worked for Fox Sports Florida producing and reporting. Talia earned a master’s degree in journalism from Regent University and a bachelor's degree from the University of Virginia.