Adventures in education: the field trip to a sex-toy store


I suppose if you think so little of your kid (not to mention your self respect) that you’d send him off to something called The Gaia Democratic School, you lose your right to complain.

A sex education teacher has drawn the ire of parents after taking middle- and high-school students on a field trip to an adult novelty store in Minneapolis.

Gaia Democratic School director Starri Hedges (editor: she is pictured above so anyone who is surprised really wasn’t paying much attention) took about a dozen students to the Smitten Kitten last week. Hedges told the Star Tribune ( ) that she wanted to provide a safe environment for students to learn about human sexual behavior.

Besides offering adult books, videos, toys and other products, the store also has educational workshops, which the students attended.

“What I saw happening on our trip, I thought it was beautiful because kids could talk to these sex educators without any shame, without any fear,” Hedges said. Some of her students bought condoms, she said.

But it was educational:

Smitten Kitten calls itself “a progressive sex toy store for everyone” and credits itself with leading the “non-toxic sex toy movement” since its opening in 2003.

The store’s owner, Jennifer Pritchett, said in a statement that she considers her shop an educational resource, according to WCCO-TV. “We leave it up to the discretion of parents and guardians as to when, and in what capacity, they seek resources from our educators,” the statement said.

Actually, the story is a bit more interesting, Starri Hedges (@gaiademocratic) is actually the “executive director” of the school. She isn’t some rogue sex ed teacher, she runs the place. And she is doubling down:

Hedges has not admitted a mistake in taking the students there but said she should have communicated properly with parents, according to Minnesota Public Radio.

This is what happens when you allow idiots, and in a Venn Diagram of “idiots” and “educators” the sets are amazingly congruent, to teach sensitive subjects to children. The idiot gets to decide what your kids learn and it is up to you to try to unscrew the situation. The fact that Hedges thought a sex toy store provided a “safe environment” in which to talk about human sexuality is rather mind-boggling. It sounds more like the sex-ed version of Scared Straight.