Phil Murphy slammed for crushing School Board dissent of controversial new school curriculum

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New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy - Photo 130146694 © Laurence Agron |

TRENTON, NJ – New Jersey governor Phil Murphy is under Fire today after he announced that school districts that oppose his administration’s new sex-education curriculum could face punishment, including cuts to state financial aid.

This week the Murphy Administration announced the replacement of several school board members on the State Board of Education who opposed the new curriculum.

School boards across New Jersey have voiced their concerns about the new aggressive curriculum that teaches subjects deemed inappropriate to young elementary and middle school children. That new curriculum went into effect on the first day of the 2022 school year.

Senator Joe Pennacchio slammed the Murphy Administration for the autocratic management of the New Jersey State Board of Education after several board members who opposed the controversial new sex curriculum standards were set to be replaced.

“These educators dared to disagree with the dubious new education direction, and for this, they are being thrown off the board,” said Pennacchio (R-26). “That isn’t governing. It is dictating, and it is something we’ve seen too often from Trenton in recent years.”

According to Pennachio, new members were nominated to the Board this week to replace others who voted against the new sex ed standards in 2020 and urged the Acting Commissioner of Education to reconsider those standards before they took effect this year.

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“This iron-fisted action appears to be punitive, and it leaves no doubt where the Administration and Trenton Democrats stand on the sex education curriculum,” Pennacchio noted. “The intent is to stymie all discourse. It reeks of dictatorialism. They don’t want board members discussing it, they don’t want legislators discussing it, and they don’t want parents discussing it at board of education meetings in their own towns.”

The Comprehensive Health and Physical Education approved in 2020 and implemented this month requires second-grade students to discuss ways people express their gender; fifth graders to understand romantic and sexual feelings, masturbation and differentiate between sexual orientation and gender identity; and by grade eight, students will learn about vaginal, oral, and anal sex. – Senator Joe Pennachio