Reversing a Reversal, Miami School Board Accepts Sex Ed Books It Rejected

The Miami-Dade County School Board reversed yet again on Thursday, voting to approve health and sex education textbooks for middle and high school students who have come to the fore in Florida’s battle over this which is taught in schools.

It was not just a reversal of a previous decision, but a reversal of a reversal. The board had approved the books in April by a 5-3 vote, then rejected them last week in a 5-4 vote, raising the possibility that students will go months without any sex ed curriculum.

The rejection was overturned by another vote of 5 to 4.

“We breathed a sigh of relief because what happened last week was basically a book ban and a knowledge ban,” said Lucia Baez-Geller, board member who voted for the vote. approval of the books, during a telephone interview. “This is a dangerous precedent for our students.”

The initial April approval of the books, titled “Comprehensive Health Competencies,” sparked a flurry of petitions citing a new state law that supporters call the Parental Rights in Education Measure and that opponents called it a “don’t say gay” law. .

The measure, signed by Governor Ron DeSantis in March, prohibited instruction and discussion on sexual orientation and gender for some primary school students.

The law has become one of the best-known elements of a nationwide conservative movement to make “parental rights” a central political issue, while critiquing liberal approaches to teaching American history and sexual identity.

The Miami-Dade textbooks cover both traditional sex education topics, such as pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases, as well as topics such as stress management, drugs, and alcohol.

“Much of the content is not age-appropriate, infringes on parental rights, and is scientifically inaccurate and not factual,” said Alex Serrano, director of the Miami-Dade chapter of County Citizens Defending Freedom, during the meeting last week.

The decisive vote changed on Thursday was that of Perla Tabares Hantman, the chairwoman of the board of directors, who took the initiative to call the meeting to revise the earlier decision, Ms. Baez-Geller said.

Ms. Hantman did not immediately respond to a request for comment, but Ms. Baez-Geller said Ms. Hantman’s decision was based on her determination that the use of the books was necessary to meet the educational standards of the State.

His vote has resolved the debate, unless it represents only the prelude to a re-re-overthrow.

“I think after today that issue will be put aside,” Ms. Baez-Geller said. “With a bit of luck.”

Reversing a Reversal, Miami School Board Accepts Sex Ed Books It Rejected

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