- The Washington Times - Wednesday, October 15, 2014

The University of Hawaii Center on Disability Studies is reportedly rewarding $10 and $20 gift cards to young children who participate in a controversial sex education program.

“The Pono Choices program provides gift cards to students, who have taken the course, as an incentive to complete student surveys,” Donalyn Dela Cruz, a spokeswoman for the Hawaii State Department of Education, told Watchdog.org. “Student opinion is the most powerful measure in the effectiveness of the program and we support the efforts in seeking such feedback.”

The taxpayer-funded gift cards are issued to 11-, 12- and 13-year-olds who participate in the program, which teaches about anal and homosexual sex, as well as other sexual behaviors.

The University of Hawaii receives annual funding of just under $1 million a year for five years for the Pono Choices program “to reduce the number of teen pregnancies and incidence of STIs; increase positive bonding in the school and community; increase sense of self-identity and self-efficacy; and improve expectations for the future,” Watchdog.org reported.

About $52,200 was reportedly used to buy the cards.

Republican Rep. Bob McDermott led the charge to pressure the state Board of Education to pull the curriculum, which succeeded briefly until the program was revised and reinstated over the summer.

“This is a shameless manipulation of the data — giving 11-year-old kids a $10 dollar gift card, and then asking them how they liked the program,” Mr. McDermott said, Watchdog.org reported. “Hawaii’s parents are in the unique situation of having their own tax dollars used to propagandize the ‘value’ of this deceptive intrusion into their public schools, to ‘sell’ them on a program they didn’t ask for and don’t want.

“Paying to be brainwashed so you will consent to pay more to have your children brainwashed is not a good use of tax dollars,” he said.

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