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Lt. gov. Dan Patrick wants the Texas version of the Florida law, which critics have dubbed the “Don’t Say Gay” law

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Lt. gov. Dan Patrick said Monday he would prioritize passing Texas laws that mimic those recently signed Florida bill referred to as the Don’t say gay law.

That state’s controversial law bans classroom instruction on sexual orientation or gender identity for children under fourth grade, or any instruction that is not “age or developmentally appropriate” for older students. It has come under rigorous scrutiny, opponents of the bill say it will hurt LGBTQ kids.

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While the next Texas legislature doesn’t start until January, the topic will be discussed in Education Committee Hearings before that, Patrick said in a campaign email.

“I will give top priority to this law in the next session,” he said.

Patrick’s office did not immediately respond to a request late Monday.

Enforcement of Florida’s law rests with the parents, much like Texas’ restrictive abortion law. Senate bill 8which empowers individuals to sue anyone who “supports or encourages” an abortion after about six weeks of pregnancy.

A parent can sue a school district for damages if they believe they broke the law. If they win, the parents get money and legal fees back. In Florida, proponents of the law presented it as a way to give more right to the parents. governor Gregory Abbott Has parents should also have more rights on their children’s education as he campaigns for a third term.

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Val Benavidez, executive director of the Texas Freedom Network, said in a statement to The Texas Tribune that Patrick’s promise to bring similar legislation to the state was a “stain on Texas.”

“Children’s expression of gender is not something that is scary or harmful. What’s scary is that political activists are grabbing power by interfering in the lives of Texas families and the education of students,” Benavidez said. “While politicians use hate speech that is far from center to harm our vulnerable youth, we will continue to love our children and ensure all families are uplifted in public life.”

Critics say the Florida measure aims to oppress and marginalize LGBTQ people and their families. A legal action filed by LGBTQ groups in Florida seeks to strike down the law there. The lawsuit alleges that the law violates the constitutional rights to free speech, equal protection and due process of students and families. according to NPR.

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Florida law also requires school districts to inform parents about the health services offered at the school and the ability to opt out of such services. Schools must also inform parents of any health-related questionnaires or health screening forms that may be given to every Kindergarten through third grade student.

Patrick’s announcement follows a Republican-led killing spree to limit what can be taught in schools about race and American history which books about race and sexuality are appearing on library shelves and criminalize gender-affirming healthcare For transgender children, treatment is even supported by medical experts.

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The Republicans of Texas are following a national playbook of feed on the fears of conservative parents that critical race theory is taught in public schools and children are exposed to obscene sexual content.

Critical Race Theory is the study of how race not only affects human behavior but has also shaped laws and policies, and educators say it’s not taught in Texas public schools because it’s mostly a college-level subject. The GOP often misapplies the term to any discussion of race.

legislation like The so-called Critical Race Theory Law of Texas and Studies in Books on Race and Sexuality have already put additional pressure on teachers Pandemic burnout.

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The teacher shortage in Texas has grown so bad that Abbott has called for it Building a task force that will try to fix the problem. But education advocates say state laws are forcing teachers out of the profession and discouraging potential teachers.

Disclosure: Texas Freedom Network was a financial supporter of The Texas Tribune, a nonprofit, nonpartisan news organization funded in part by donations from members, foundations, and corporate sponsors. Financial backers play no part in the Tribune’s journalism. find a complete one list of them here.

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https://www.ksat.com/news/texas/2022/04/05/lt-gov-dan-patrick-wants-texas-version-of-florida-law-that-critics-dubbed-dont-say-gay-bill/ Lt. gov. Dan Patrick wants the Texas version of the Florida law, which critics have dubbed the “Don’t Say Gay” law

Andrew Schnitker

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