Florida may ban girls’ period talk in elementary grades
TALLAHASSEE, FLA. 12/14/22-Rep. Stan McClain, R-Ocala, during session Wednesday at the Capitol in Tallahassee. COLIN HACKLEY PHOTO

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Bill would restrict public school instruction on human sexuality, sexually transmitted diseases and related topics to grades 6 through 12

Legislation moving in the Florida House would ban discussion of menstrual cycles and other human sexuality topics in elementary grades.

The bill sponsored by Republican Rep. Stan McClain would restrict public school instruction on human sexuality, sexually transmitted diseases and related topics to grades 6 through 12. McClain confirmed at a recent committee meeting that discussions about menstrual cycles would also be restricted to those grades.

“So if little girls experience their menstrual cycle in 5th grade or 4th grade, will that prohibit conversations from them since they are in the grade lower than sixth grade?” asked state Rep. Ashley Gantt, a Democrat who taught in public schools and noted that girls as young as 10 can begin having periods.

“It would,” McClain responded.

The GOP-backed legislation cleared the House Education Quality Subcommittee on Wednesday by a 13-5 vote mainly along party lines. It would also allow parents to object to books and other materials their children are exposed to, require schools to teach that a person’s sexual identity is determined biologically at birth and set up more scrutiny of certain educational materials by the state Department of Education.

McClain said the bill’s intent is to bring uniformity to sex education across all of Florida’s 67 school districts and provide more pathways for parents to object to books or other materials they find inappropriate for younger children.

At the committee meeting, Gantt asked whether teachers could face punishment if they discuss menstruation with younger students.

“My concern is they won’t feel safe to have those conversations with these little girls,” she said.

McClain said “that would not be the intent” of the bill and that he is “amenable” to some changes to its language. The measure must be approved by another committee before it can reach the House floor; a similar bill is pending in the Senate.

An email seeking comment was sent Saturday to the office of Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis, who is widely seen as a potential 2024 presidential candidate.

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Republished with permission from The Associated Press.

Associated Press


11 comments

  • gloriajame

    March 19, 2023 at 12:08 pm

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    March 19, 2023 at 2:03 pm

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  • Evelyn

    March 19, 2023 at 3:59 pm

    One can only hope the country rallies against this claptrap from the Republican legislators. Forbidding teachers to discuss with girls the normal changes expected in going through puberty reminds me of an experience at the military commissary a few years back. A father, clearly left in charge of his preteen daughter while the Mom was deployed, stopped me in the bra aisle and said he was confused about how to pick out a bra for his 11-year-old. As a mother, I was more than happy to help them make sense of one of the rites of passage of being a preteen girl.

  • Ocean Joe

    March 19, 2023 at 4:23 pm

    To paraphrase the Godfather: “Look what they did to my state!”

  • Keystone Keys

    March 19, 2023 at 7:00 pm

    All these topics SHOULD be discussed in an appropriate manner in age-appropriate health classes. If the wokerati attempt to interject that anyone that “identifies” as a female can have a menstrual cycle, that crazy train should be derailed.

    • Rob Desantos

      March 20, 2023 at 12:58 pm

      There you go obsessing about children’s bodies again, typical Florida groomer.

  • cassandra

    March 19, 2023 at 9:38 pm

    This clown has no qualifications to decide what little girls are allowed to talk about in school. FCS he’s a builder! And he’s not too concerned about what it’s going to be like standing in the lunch line with blood dripping on your shoe.

    This creepy old man is distracting parents with fantasies about trans girls in their daughters’ bathroom; Meanwhile he’s poking his nose around under their skirts. Parents need to protect their kids from sex-obsessed grandpas like Stan McClain.

  • Sandra Byrd

    March 20, 2023 at 7:07 am

    What grade do they have a class where they teach the girls what’s going on with their body’s. back in the 70’s it was called Something Health class. I took it in 9th grade. We
    watched a film. No big deal..I really don’t see nothing wrong with waiting till 6th grade. But the other part is really wrong. Call me old fashion.but I raised 3 girls and by the time they were 5. They knew what a women’s body goes through. We even found a film on PBS and let them watch a baby being born. It didn’t shatter their minds. They asked a few questions and that was it.

  • It's Complicated

    March 20, 2023 at 10:08 am

    Wonder if this change in the law precludes a nurse in a school clinic from having a conversation with a pre-sixth grade girl who starts her period? Read the bill… it doesn’t really speak to that. It is more focused upon the classroom, curriculum (“instructional and library materials”) and parental review of the same.

    Hopefully, parents are having these conversations with their girls so they are not terrified, and know what to do when it occurs.

  • Rob Desantos

    March 20, 2023 at 12:57 pm

    Lily-livered Florida Republicans want to ban mention of anything that like totally grosses them out. You’re next, cooties!

  • It's Complicated

    March 20, 2023 at 2:10 pm

    ALL of this is an (over)reaction to junk that was being taught in SOME public schools. Some of what was being taught was accompanied by comic book style curriculum which depicted graphic hetero and homo-sexual encounters – rising to the level of ‘instruction manual’, and introducing the nomenclature of the same. Honestly, it is difficult for me to understand why defenders of that material cannot see why parents would object to it. This level of backlash is directly related to that kind of instructional nonsense. Didn’t happen everywhere in the state, but where it did happen, school officials were tone deaf to parental objections.

Comments are closed.


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