Equality Florida: Duval Schools lack ‘visible support’ for LGBTQ students
Equality Florida is not happy with changes in DCPS.

DuvalCountyPublicSchools_1
'DCPS is telling students that there is something inherently wrong with LGBTQ people.'

The Duval County School District has classrooms that are “bare of visible support” for LGBTQ students, according to Equality Florida, as locals continue to adjust to changes in state law.

The LGBTQ civil rights organization attributes this to an “emergency meeting” of principals last week, in which they were directed to remove posters, wall decorations and stickers that “support and affirm” LGBTQ students. Florida Politics reached out for more details of this meeting, and will add when we have them.

“The district’s censorship of LGBTQ-inclusive classroom environments sends a dangerous message to young people,” said Joe Saunders, Equality Florida Senior Political Director.

“In tearing down rainbow Safe Space stickers and tossing inclusive posters into the trash, Duval County Public Schools is telling students that there is something inherently wrong with LGBTQ people — and telegraphing to LGBTQ youth that they should remain hidden,” Saunders continued.

“Despite false assurances from Republican proponents of the Don’t Say LGBTQ Law that its scope would be narrow and its impacts limited to grades K-3, we are witnessing sweeping effects of this intentionally vague policy across the state, with broad censorship of LGBTQ people being applied to every grade level. School districts are charged with doing everything in their power to mitigate the harms of HB 1557 and ensure that every student is protected in school and every family is respected. Duval County Public Schools should reverse course and recommit to cultivating an environment that is inclusive of and celebrates all students.”

HB 1557, the Parental Rights in Education law, has been called “Don’t Say Gay” by critics, who feared a chilling effect from the law. The law bans classroom “instruction on sexual orientation or gender identity” for students in kindergarten through third grade, or “in a manner that is not age-appropriate or developmentally appropriate for students in accordance with state standards.”

In the immediate wake of the bill passing, the school district moved to pare down the LGBTQ Support Guide and remove an anti-bullying video used by the district, while concerns persisted from the LGBTQ community about what the future could look like.

Florida Politics has reached out to the Duval County School District for a response to Equality Florida’s claim.

Duval County Superintendent Dr. Diana Greene downplayed worries in a recent interview with WJXT, saying that “Team Duval” was ready to offer a safe and supportive environment in the new school year.

“But we will also ensure that every single student that steps on our campus, that they know that they have people who care about them, that can support them and that we can support their families, as well,” Greene said last week.

A.G. Gancarski

A.G. Gancarski has written for FloridaPolitics.com since 2014. He is based in Northeast Florida. He can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter: @AGGancarski


9 comments

  • Don’t Look Up

    August 15, 2022 at 10:36 am

    FREEDUMB IS JUST ANOTHER WORD FOR HATE.
    DeSantis’s policies like this will soon initiate violence against someone in the LGBTQ community. The policy is so vague it encourages individual interpretation. Voters have the ability and mandate to get Republicans out of office. They’re failing at leadership.

    • Joe Corsin

      August 15, 2022 at 10:52 am

      Yeah saw a dude with a freedom T-shirt on the other day. Because the GOP is the party of the rich…and the dude wearing the T-shirt was far from it…makes him an idiot.

  • who cares

    August 15, 2022 at 11:23 am

    lbgt students are just like any other students.. they are their to learn, stop playing politics cause they are gay,, reading , writing and math,, just learn, no political agendas

    • That’s an d

      August 16, 2022 at 11:53 pm

      “Just learn”

      You don’t have any teachers left to do that.

      God what am I saying? Only thing You people use schools in Florida for is target practice.

  • Mr. X. Onoilco

    August 15, 2022 at 11:31 am

    No student in a public school should be supported or affirmed for reasons of sexuality, religion, race, ethnicity, or for any other particularist reason, unless ALL students are so affirmed, even if that means hanging a life size poster of Troy Donahue necking with Farrah Fawcett in front of Westminster Cathedral while she is wearing an Exxon Oil Company singlet (if such a poster exists) in every fourth grade classroom. If you are okay with that, then I guess I can live with your LGBTQ weeps hanging all over the place.

  • YYep

    August 15, 2022 at 6:19 pm

    Life has no real support best to learn that young. There is no special me
    Grass gas or a no one rides for free

  • Richard Bruce

    August 15, 2022 at 8:25 pm

    Easy and simple solution. Give parents a voucher to have their child(ren) go to the school of their choice. No Gov’t should force students to go to a school against their parent’s wishes. School can complete for the dollars.

    • Ron Ogden

      August 16, 2022 at 7:40 am

      This is actually the root of the best solution to the problem of public education–make it parent-controlled private education.

  • Frankie M.

    August 15, 2022 at 9:25 pm

    DCPS gets so triggered by words like gay and LGBTQ. What a bunch of silly geese scared of a few helicopter moms who drink wine all day & watch Judge Judy.

Comments are closed.


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