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Gov. DeSantis signs legislation limiting terms for school board members

DeSantis says the legislation will help further his goals of "curriculum transparency" for parents.

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — Speaking at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, Governor Ron DeSantis expressed support and signed legislation to further "curriculum transparency." 

The bill, H.B. 1467, will require term limits for school board members, limiting them to serving no more than 12 years. It will also require certain meetings related to instructional materials to be open to the public. Those involved in selecting library materials will have to complete training and report materials that have public objections.

"We believe parents not only have a role, they have a fundamental role to be involved in the education of their kids," DeSantis said. 

Two mothers also spoke at the news conference, saying they had discovered explicit reading material in the libraries of the schools their children attend. 

Education Commissioner Richard Corcoran and Senate President Wilton Simpson were also in attendance, sharing their support for the legislation. 

"When you look at this bill, it brings transparency to our K through 12 system," Simpson explained. 

The new law will also require elementary schools, district school boards, and the Florida Department of Education to post specified information relating to instructional materials on their websites.  

"Accountability, transparency, and empowering parents makes everything better," Corcoran said. 

The signing of this legislation is another education proposal involving increased control and access for parents to their child's education. The controversial "Parental Rights in Education" bill, also dubbed the "Don't Say Gay" bill has not yet been signed or vetoed by the governor. However, Gov. DeSantis has voiced his support for the legislation and is likely to sign it.

The bill prevents classroom instruction on sexual orientation or gender identity for children in kindergarten through third grade, or in a manner that is not age-appropriate for students.

The bill does not give schools the ability to “out” LGBTQ students who confide in staff about their sexual orientation or identity, but schools are required to notify parents about any change to their child's “mental, emotional, or physical health or well-being.” There are exceptions such as concerns about disclosing that information could result in abuse or neglect.

Schools also are not required to inform parents if another student in their child’s class is gay.

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