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Florida House passes controversial measure dubbed the ‘Don’t Say Gay’ bill by critics

Florida’s House of Representatives passed a controversial bill on Thursday limiting when and how teachers and school staff can discuss gender and sexual orientation in the classroom.

Opponents – many of whom have taken to calling the measure the “Don’t Say Gay” bill – say it will make life harder for LGBTQ youth, who already face a higher rate of bullying and a higher risk of suicide than their straight, cisgender peers.

But the Republican sponsor behind H.B. 1557 says it aims to have schools teach gender and sexuality at an appropriate age and keep parents informed about what’s happening in the classroom.

The legislation prohibits any instruction about sexuality or gender between kindergarten and third grade “or in a manner that is not age-appropriate or developmentally appropriate for students in accordance with state standards.”

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