Respect Equality

Miami-Dade School Board to vote on whether to recognize LGBTQ history month post ‘Don’t Say Gay’

The vote is one example of how Florida schools are working out how to navigate the new “Parental Rights in Education” law.
(Maskot/Getty Images)

Story at a glance

  • On Sept. 7, 2022, the Miami-Dade School Board will vote on whether it should recognize October as LGBTQ History Month. 

  • During the meeting, the school board will also determine if teachers should be allowed to instruct two landmark supreme court cases, one of which granted the right to same-sex marriage. 

  • LGBTQ+ advocacy groups are showing support for the school board’s measure. 

As students return to the classroom this month, Florida schools are working out how to abide by the state’s “Parental Rights in Education” law, otherwise known as “Don’t Say Gay” bill.  

As a result, the Miami-Dade School Board (MDSB) plans to vote next week on whether it will recognize October as LGBTQ History Month. The school board recognized LGBTQ History Month last year for the first time.  

“Teaching LGBTQ history fosters a welcoming school climate where LGBTQ students, families, and educators can live their authentic lives and be treated with dignity and respect,” wrote MDSB school board member Lucia Baez-Geller in an action proposal.  

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“The District appreciates and recognizes the importance of LGBTQ History Month as an effective means of educating and calling to action our community to work together by fighting prejudice and discrimination in their own lives and increasing visibility and raising awareness,” Baez-Geller added.  

During the Sept. 7 meeting, the school board members will also decide if teachers should be able to use two landmark supreme court cases in 12th-grade social studies classes.  

The first case, Obergefell v. Hodges, granted the right to same-sex marriage, and the second, Bostock v. Clayton Country, prohibits an employer from discriminating against a worker because they are gay or transgender.   

Prism, a South Florida-based nonprofit that works to expand access to LGBT-inclusive education materials and sexual health resources, started an online petition in support of the school board recognizing October as LGBTQ History Month.  

“In light of the harmful anti-LGBTQ laws passed this year, it is abundantly clear that MDCPS must remain steadfast in supporting and affirming all students,” the petition on reads.  

“The recognition of LGBTQ History Month promotes education about the historical impacts, achievements, and contributions of our lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer community.” 

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