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Wednesday, June 19, 2024

Expansion of Ban on Teaching Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Proposed in Florida

Under a proposed new rule that will be put up for a vote by the Board of Education of the state of Florida the following month, the state is considering making its ban on teaching young children about sexual orientation and gender identity issues applicable to all students enrolled in the state’s public schools.

It is expected that Republican Governor Ron DeSantis will seek his party’s nomination for president in 2024. The proposed rule is the latest move by the administration of Republican Governor Ron DeSantis, who is expected to run for president in 2024, to limit or prohibit instruction on topics that conservatives consider inappropriate for the state’s classrooms.

In December of 2017, Governor Ron DeSantis put his signature on a bill pushed by Republicans that prohibited teachers from discussing sexual orientation and gender identity in the classrooms of pupils in grades kindergarten through third. The so-called “don’t speak homosexual” measure has been roundly criticised by its detractors.

The current plan from the Florida Department of Education would extend the restriction all the way through the 12th grade; however, it would not need permission from the legislative branch.

On Wednesday, the idea was met with quick opposition from Democrats and activists working to advance LGBTQ rights. A representative for the White House, Karine Jean-Pierre, described the proposal as “totally, absolutely wrong.”

Equality At the cost of diverse families and educators, the state of Florida claimed that the regulation was supporting Governor DeSantis’ political goal.

If a teacher discusses sexual orientation or gender identity outside of the mandatory curriculum or health classes that parents have been briefed on and given the option to keep their children out of class for those lessons, they run the risk of facing disciplinary action, as the rule stipulates that they could face such action.

Instruction on sexual orientation or gender identity should not be a component of the public school system for students in kindergarten through grade twelve. In a tweet sent on Wednesday, the spokesman for DeSantis, Bryan Griffin, said “full stop.”

During the meeting on April 19, the state Board of Education is going to vote on whether or not to adopt the regulation.

Jonathan James
Jonathan James
I serve as a Senior Executive Journalist of The National Era
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