Sex education dispute takes center stage in Hillsborough County schools – Tampa Bay Times

by | Nov 18, 2022 | Education

The big story: Two years ago, Florida lawmakers required school districts to publish their sex education curriculum in advance of an annual adoption, to give the public more opportunities to weigh in.Ever since, the subject has become increasingly volatile in some communities. Fights over content took place in Miami-Dade and Duval counties earlier this year, and this week the debate made its way to Hillsborough County.Claiming the rights of parents as defined in Florida law were undermined, thousands of Hillsborough residents petitioned against the school district’s sex education curriculum. Several of them presented their views to an independent hearing officer during a nearly 5-hour hearing on Thursday. During that time, they argued that the school district was presenting obscene information to children and attempting to indoctrinate youngsters with political concepts masquerading as science. District officials rebutted the contentions, saying they met all the requirements for providing reproductive health lessons as set forth in state law and standards.Now it’s up to retired judge Claudia Isom to make a recommendation to the School Board, which still has final say over the issue. Read more here.Hot topicsAcademic freedom: U.S. District Judge Mark Walker ruled Florida’s “Stop WOKE” act governing lessons about race issues should not apply to the state’s universities and colleges. He found the state argument that professors only had academic freedom if they expressed the viewpoint of the state “positively dystopian.”Book challenges: …

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