Florida Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis said students and teachers in Sunshine State schools will “never be forced to declare pronouns” while signing a measure to protect children and parental rights.
DeSantis on Wednesday signed into law a number of measures that work to “expand the Parental Rights in Education law, end pronoun insanity in schools, ban transgender hormones & surgeries for minors, ensure bathrooms/locker rooms are SAFE for girls & women, protect kids from sexually explicit drag shows,” and more, according to a tweet from the governor’s team.
“This bill ensures Florida students and teachers will never be forced to declare pronouns in school or be forced to use pronouns not based on biological sex,” DeSantis said of HB 1069 from a press conference in Tampa.
“We never did this through all of human history until like, what, two weeks ago,” DeSantis continued. “Now this is something they’re having third-graders declare pronouns? We’re not doing the pronoun olympics in Florida. It’s not happening here.”
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Specifically, the measure signed into law by DeSantis prohibits “employees, contractors, and students of such educational institutions from being required to use, from providing, and from being asked to provide certain titles and pronouns.”
Additionally, the measure ensures that students are not “penalized or subjected to certain treatment for not providing certain titles and pronouns” and prohibits “classroom instruction on sexual orientation or gender identity from occurring in prekindergarten through grade 8.”
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DeSantis described the measure as an “expansion of last year’s Parental Rights in Education bill” and insisted that there have been certain school policies in the state “that make kids pick pronouns and even hide that from their parents.”
“Again, let the kids be kids, let them be in school like normally,” he said. “It’s inappropriate to force them to try to choose these pronouns and to do that.”
Another bill signed Wednesday by DeSantis, SB 254, prohibits anyone under age 18 from undergoing sex-reassignment surgeries or taking prescription-based cross-sex hormones to treat gender dysphoria in Florida. The bill would also make permanent a state rule banning Medicaid from reimbursing people of all ages who undergo the procedures.
The bill, backed by DeSantis and Florida Surgeon General Joseph Ladapo, previously passed the Florida Senate in early April before DeSantis signed it in front of children Wednesday.
“This will permanently outlaw the mutilation of minors. It will outlaw the surgical procedures and experimental puberty blockers for minors,” DeSantis said prior to signing SB 254. “It will also require any adults receiving these surgeries to be informed about the irreversible nature and about the dangers of the procedures. It will give the courts temporary jurisdiction to intervene and halt procedures for out-of-state children.”
A third bill signed by DeSantis, SB 1438, is aimed at preventing children from attending drag shows, although it does not specifically name that kind of entertainment in its language, according to Fox35 Orlando.
“You know, there’s these adult performances… these drag shows, sexually explicit and what they’re doing. And look, adult entertainment, you know, people can do what they want with some of that,” DeSantis said. “But to have minors there, I mean, you’ll have situations where you’ll have like an 8-year-old girl there where you have these, like really explicit shows and that is just inappropriate.”
The final two bills signed by DeSantis Wednesday include HB 1521, which “provides requirements for exclusive use of restrooms & changing facilities by gender” and “prohibits willfully entering restroom or changing facility designated for opposite sex & refusing to depart when asked to do so.”
The other bill, HB 225, will “allow private school, virtual school and homeschool students to participate in sports and extracurricular activities at public or private schools regardless of their zip code,” DeSantis said.
Fox News’ Greg Norman and Chris Pandolfo contributed to this article.
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