Although the liberal majority on the Duval County School Board is trying desperately to avoid supporting a popular new law in Florida, parents are not letting them get away with the ploy.
Board Member Charlotte Joyce proposed a resolution last month endorsing and supporting the new parental rights law enacted by the Florida Legislature and signed by Gov. Ron DeSantis.
Rather than voting, the board decided to table the resolution and hold a “workshop.”
At the workshop, they mumbled around the issue for a while and did nothing.
Clearly, they are hoping the issue will die quietly if it is ignored.
But at the June 7 board meeting, more than 150 parents took about three hours denouncing the board for its inaction. Only a few liberals voiced rote support.
Parental rights has become a hot button subject nationwide as government agencies try to intrude on family matters and dictate to parents how their children are raised and educated.
One local organization, Moms for Liberty, monitors the board’s actions, school textbooks and other educational issues. It has an active presence on Facebook and recently gained clout when one of its members was named to the state Board of Education, infuriating liberals in Florida who have owned The Blob, as conservatives refer to the education establishment, for decades.
Becky Nathanson of Moms for Liberty spoke at the meeting expressing the group’s “deep disappointment” at the board’s unwillingness to consider Joyce’s resolution.
She reminded the board members that 60 to 80 percent of Florida residents support the Parental Rights in Education Act.
Another one of the speakers challenged the board’s action in tabling the resolution, saying it did not conform to Roberts Rules of Order, the manual of parliamentary procedure.
Others threatened legal action if the school administration violated the state’s new law that, among other things, prohibits discussion of gender and sexuality with children in kindergarten through third grade.
One of the key issues is a guide for teachers on sex and gender, published by the administration although never approved by the board.
It specifically says that parents shall not be notified if their children express interest in changing their gender.
This outraged many parents who have children enrolled in the government schools.
They saw this as “grooming,” or promoting and encouraging impressionable young children to attempt to change their gender. On the Far Left, it is now claimed that there
are many genders, not just males and females, and that gender can be changed at will, although they encourage the use of chemicals and surgery on young children.
As cover, they often claim they merely are “supporting” children who wish to indulge in such experiments, and allege the children are victims of bullying. What little evidence that has been presented of any bullying is highly questionable.
This comes from the controversial guide:
“Occasionally, a parent may contact teachers, school counselors, or administrators to ask if their child has confided in them about his/her sexual orientation, or if it is suspected their child may be gay. With the very limited exception involving the imminent fear of physical harm, it is never appropriate to divulge the sexual orientation of a student to a parent. If a student’s transgender status is set forth in the student’s educational records, then pursuant FERPA, a parent may see that information. Thus, care should be taken regarding the recording of such status in the student’s education records if there is a concern about the student’s privacy or safety while home.”
The 36-page guide has been whittled down to eight pages, but the administration has said the deleted information will continue to be used in teaching teachers, Nathanson said.
It is not just Duval County. In the government schools of Clay and St. Johns counties, parents have complained about grooming, obscene books in school libraries and other disturbing trends.
“There is nothing but crippling devastation that can come from planting the seed in every child’s mind that they were born in the wrong body and that they need to fix how they were made,” one speaker said at a St. Johns County board meeting. The board voted to keep seven books that had been the subject of parental complaints, including one about “white supremacy.”
Liberals supporting these new trends claim they only are following federal guidelines. Granting special privileges and treatment to people based on their sexual preferences or race has been a priority of the Democrat Party for years and now that they control the federal government the effort has been accelerated.
At the last board meeting Joyce read aloud her proposed resolution and reminded board members that they merely would be saying they would obey the law by adopting the resolution. No one responded or acknowledged her presentation. There has been no indication that the board will address the matter again but it does not appear that parents are going to be silent about the inaction.