Florida seems to be something of a trailblazer in terms of inspiring other states to consider legislation limiting conversations in classrooms about sexual orientation and gender identity.
Last month, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis signed the “Parental Rights in Education” bill that bans instruction or classroom discussion about sexual issues for public school students in kindergarten through third grade.
“Classroom instruction by school personnel or third parties on sexual orientation or gender identity may not occur in kindergarten through grade three or in a manner that is not age-appropriate or developmentally appropriate for students in accordance with state standards,” the law states.
The law, however, does contain the terms “sexual orientation” and “gender identity.”
Back in February, the then-bill prompted President Joe Biden to go on social media to rebuke the Florida measure and its sponsors.
Supporters of the law say it prevent “grooming” of children to be open to sexual ideas long before they’re mature enough to consider them — and making them more vulnerable to sexual exploitation.
The national controversy over the law is not stopping other states from considering legislation containing provisions that mirror the Florida law.
A dozen states have proposed their own bills: Alabama, Arizona, Georgia, Iowa, Louisiana, South Carolina, Missouri, Indiana, Kentucky, Oklahoma, Tennessee and Ohio.
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott said he will make legislation similar to Florida’s law a top priority during the state’s next legislative session.