One of the most contentious issues to arise in public policy debates concerning the legalization of same-sex marriage is whether legalizing same-sex marriage has a significant detrimental impact on education, particularly public education. However, legal scholarly and professional consideration of this issue is scarce and one sided. This article reviews the evidence that legalizing same-sex marriage has had a serious, profoundly controversial, and arguably detrimental impact on public education. It then explains why legalization of same-sex marriage must have some impact on educational curriculum. When the meaning of marriage changes it must be reflected in the curriculum that covers that subject. Next, the existing constitutional protections against detrimental impacts upon parents’ rights and family integrity interests of legalizing same-sex marriage are reviewed. The article also presents an analogy from abortion jurisprudence that may provide some protection for parental rights to control the education of their children and protect them against some detrimental effects on education from legalizing same-sex marriage. Finally, the article provides some recommendations for legal remedies and community action that may address these concerns.
© 2011 Brigham Young University Education and Law Journal
Lynn D. Wardle, 𝘛𝘩𝘦 𝘐𝘮𝘱𝘢𝘤𝘵𝘴 𝘰𝘯 𝘌𝘥𝘶𝘤𝘢𝘵𝘪𝘰𝘯 𝘰𝘧 𝘓𝘦𝘨𝘢𝘭𝘪𝘻𝘪𝘯𝘨 𝘚𝘢𝘮𝘦-𝘚𝘦𝘹 𝘔𝘢𝘳𝘳𝘪𝘢𝘨𝘦 𝘢𝘯𝘥 𝘓𝘦𝘴𝘴𝘰𝘯𝘴 𝘧𝘳𝘰𝘮 𝘈𝘣𝘰𝘳𝘵𝘪𝘰𝘯 𝘑𝘶𝘳𝘪𝘴𝘱𝘳𝘶𝘥𝘦𝘯𝘤𝘦, 2011 BYU Eᴅᴜᴄ. & L.J. 593.