Florida’s Largest School District Rejects Sex Ed Textbooks

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By Mivette Vega

July 22, 2022

Miami-Dade County school members and parents said the material is not age-appropriate for students in middle and high school.

Miami-Dade County, the largest school district in Florida, doesn’t have a sex education book after school board members rejected two proposed textbooks this week, over concerns that they violate the state’s Parental Rights in Education law, better known as “Don’t Say Gay.”

The decision was tight, with a 5-4 vote. School members and parents in opposition said the material is not age-appropriate for students in middle and high school. Some of the topics they criticized were abortion and contraceptives.

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Now Miami students are without sex education textbooks less than a month away from the beginning of the new school year.

The board had approved the textbook in April, with a vote of 5-3, but it was challenged by some parents who cited the “Don’t Say Gay” law, which DeSantis signed in March, despite strong opposition.

Back then, the board approved asking the publisher to remove a chapter called “Understanding Sexuality,” which covers gender and sexual orientation, among other topics.

The majority of speakers that participated in the meeting last Wednesday, including parents and students, supported the textbooks because they said the lessons are crucial for students, pointing to sexual activity rates among teens.

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Miami-Dade is the fourth largest school district in the country serving some 340,000 students.

Under Florida law, any parent can opt their child out of sex education lessons.

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Author

  • Mivette Vega

    Mivette Vega is a seasoned journalist and multimedia reporter whose stories center the Latino community. She is passionate about justice, equality, environmental matters, and animals. She is a Salvadorrican—Salvadorian that grew up in Puerto Rico—that has lived in San Juan, Venice, Italy, and Miami.

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