Sex education lessons attract conservative criticism in Florida schools – Tampa Bay Times

by | Sep 21, 2022 | Education

The big story: Sex education has become one of the focal points in Florida’s ongoing public school culture wars.Conservative activists around the state have pressured school boards to scale back their lessons about sex, pointing to what they consider materials that are age inappropriate or, in some cases, pornographic. They contend the right to opt out of the classes is not enough.The Hillsborough County School Board was the latest to face such criticism, following similar efforts to derail the instruction in Miami-Dade and Duval counties. Hillsborough board members stood behind the curriculum after some lively conversation. Read more here.Hot topicsVouchers: About 5% of the Flagler County school district’s general fund budget is dedicated to supporting students who attend private schools, Flagler Live reports. • Leon County school district officials raised concerns about sending close to $16 million to private schools as vouchers, WCTV reports. • A nonprofit reported that Florida ‘re-routed’ $1.3 billion in taxpayer money to private schools this year, as vouchers have grown, the News Service of Florida reports. Officials from scholarship funding organizations took issue with the characterization of the funding.Security: Lee County parents and teachers said they want schools to do more to make them feel safe, WINK reports.Leadership: The Escambia County School Board decided not to discuss the possibility of removing superintendent Tim Smith over a question about the district’s student rights and responsibilities handbook, the Pensacola News-Journal reports.Community outreach: Gadsden County school district officials plan to hold several outreach meetings to gather public input on how to improve the schools, WTXL reports.Book challenges: The Duval County school district has become a hotspot for book banning efforts, WJXT reports. District officials claimed they have not banned books, but are reviewi …

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