Florida School Board votes to continue sex education curriculum despite parental objections

Hillsborough County Public Schools in Florida voted 5-2 on Tuesday to resume the sex education curriculum for high school students, despite parental opposition Tampa Bay Times reported.

State law requires annual sex education approval for grades seven, eight, and ninth.

Before the meeting, the parents emailed the school board protesting the use of Planned Parenthood documents in the sex education curriculum. Additionally, some parents disapproved of classes that taught children that gender identity can be different from sexual anatomy.

Concerned parents who attended the recent school board meeting argued the class was giving children age-inappropriate information about sex.

Hillsdale Baptist Church pastor Travis Smith told the school board, “I do not tolerate anyone who violates a child’s purity.

Two school board members, Melissa Snively and Stacey Hahn, agreed with the concerned parents and voted against the curriculum.

Snively said the opt-out forms provided to parents did not clearly explain the details and depth of the topics the teachers wanted to discuss with the students.

“Warning warning warning parents,” Snively said at the school board meeting. “There are a lot of things that make you uncomfortable and could make your child uncomfortable.”

The form provided by the Hillsborough School Board contained only a bulleted list of the general topics that would be covered for each grade level. However, the digital one Opt-out process handout contain a link to the full online curriculum.

State law requires each parent to be provided with an opt-out form if they wish to have their child removed from sex education classes.

Jacalyn Muir, another parent who opposed the curriculum, recounted WFTS TV“I did not consent to an opt-out. I think we need an opt-in.”

School board member Stacey Hahn expressed concern about links in the classroom materials that provided students with information about condoms and the morning-after pill.

Superintendent Addison Davis defended the material. “This is a curriculum that is very close to our hearts,” he said.

Muir said she looked at the online parenting portal and claims she found troubling information in the lesson plans.

“This year there’s even something in the seventh grade curriculum that talks about the Romeo and Juliet law, which allows minors aged 16 to 17 to engage in consensual activities with a partner aged 16 to 23 to perform. And that’s straight from the Hillsborough County portal,” Muir said.

A school board member who supports the curriculum, Lynn Gray, said she feels comfortable with the material because community members and attorneys have reviewed it. Gray said it’s better for kids to learn about sex education from experts than online.

“While I understand that talking about sex and body parts can be very uncomfortable, most of these children are not learning what they need to know to stay healthy,” said Tracey Miller, gynecologist and resource supporter.

“Nobody is saying sex education shouldn’t be taught because the statistics say it reduces teenage pregnancy and the rate of sexually transmitted diseases. This isn’t just your mum and dad’s sex ed, though,” concerned mum Aly Legge told WFTS-TV. “It’s a little bit more robust than I think an 11 or 12-year-old can understand or should be exposed to, and I think a lot of parents feel that way.”

https://www.theblaze.com/news/florida-school-board-votes-to-move-forward-with-sex-education-curriculum-despite-parent-objections Florida School Board votes to continue sex education curriculum despite parental objections

Laura Coffey

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