Education

Republican Lawmakers Help Kill Bill Preventing Teachers From Hiding Kids’ Gender Transitions

[YouTube/Screenshot/Public — User: Georgia State Senate]

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Reagan Reese Contributor
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The Georgia legislature rejected a bill on Wednesday that would have prohibited teachers from hiding students’ gender transitions from parents.

The state Senate Education and Youth Committee, which has a Republican majority, voted 12-1 against Senate Bill 88, a piece of legislation that would have required parent’s permission for a student to change their gender and mandated that parents sign off on gender identity lessons within the school. Opponents of the bill argued it overstepped and were concerned with the language of the legislation which defined gender identity as “actual or perceived sex and a person’s gender expression,” according to the Associated Press. (RELATED: South Dakota Legislature Kills Bill That Would Have Barred Schools From Hosting Drag Shows)

“We have heard from many folks, including our legal partners and activists from around the state, on this issue with this bill,” Mike Griffin, a lobbyist arguing against the bill for Georgia Southern Baptists, told the AP. “We believe that this bill has dramatic unintended consequences for parental rights and for children in public schools as well. Those concerns have not all been addressed.”

Georgia Republican Sen. Carden Summers, the author of the bill, said the legislation was aimed at elementary school classrooms with the intent of involving parents in their child’s education, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Schools who failed to comply with SB 88 could have possibly had their schools’ state funds and educators’ state teaching licenses revoked.

Students receive shoes during Mercedes-Benz USA teams up with Ludacris to donate new shoes to children as part of Season to Shine Holiday Giving Program on December 07, 2022 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Terence Rushin/Getty Images for Mercedes-Benz USA)

Students receive shoes during Mercedes-Benz USA teams up with Ludacris to donate new shoes to children as part of Season to Shine Holiday Giving Program on December 07, 2022 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Terence Rushin/Getty Images for Mercedes-Benz USA)

Critics of the legislation compared Summers’ bill to Florida Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis’ “Parental Rights In Education” bill which prohibits lessons on gender identity and sexual orientation in K-3 classrooms, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported.

“There is no reason that gender identity should be singled out for special rules, regulations or policies,” Jeff Graham, the executive director of LGBTQ Georgia Equality, a group focused on ensuring fairness for the LGBTQ community. told the AP. “And frankly, we’re still concerned that bringing up these bills, the number of bills, is causing harm to the mental health of LGBTQ students, especially transgender students here in Georgia.”

The state Senate Education and Youth Committee and Summers did not immediately respond to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment.

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