A Florida school board is being praised after it rejected two textbooks that were initially part of the district’s sexual education curriculum at middle and high schools.
In a 5-4 vote, the Miami-Dade County School Board reversed its initial decision to adopt the two textbooks. According to The Christian Post, one was titled, Comprehensive Health Skills for High School and the other was called, Comprehensive Health Skills for Middle School.
The board was encouraged to take up the second vote after parents and residents spoke out about the textbooks and curriculum. Some 40 community members spoke during the meeting, including parents, both for and against the textbooks.
Parents who were against the books said they contained content about sexual orientation and gender identity that violated Florida’s Parental Rights in Education Bill. The bill, signed into law earlier this year, prohibits schools from discussing sexual orientation and gender identity with students under certain circumstances. The law requires schools to inform parents of changes to their child’s well-being.
“Each individual parent is an expert on their child and what their child is ready to know in terms of where they are in their maturity level to handle that kind of information,” said Meg Kilgannon, senior fellow for education studies at the socially conservative nonprofit Family Research Council.
“There is nothing to stop the parents who have no problem with that curriculum from teaching those things to their children right now,” she said. “With or without that book, they are free to do that, but they absolutely cannot impose it on my child in a classroom setting.”
However, Kat Duesterhaus, a board member of the Florida National Organization for Women and the Miami Coalition to Advance Racial Equity, said she was disappointed in the decision from the board.
“We need to equip youth with the ability to navigate their own bodies and consensual situations,” she said. “We’re leaving them ill-equipped to have agency of their sexuality and bodies.”
Photo courtesy: Sharon McCutcheon/Unsplash
Amanda Casanova is a writer living in Dallas, Texas. She has covered news for ChristianHeadlines.com since 2014. She has also contributed to The Houston Chronicle, U.S. News and World Report and IBelieve.com. She blogs at The Migraine Runner.