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NC Senator: “Censoring school curriculums isn’t going to keep our kids alive” (w/ video)

Members of the Senate Education Committee held their first hearing Wednesday on the controversial Parents’ Bill of Rights. The legislation touted by Senate President Phil Berger a day earlier would ban teaching about sexual orientation and gender identity in K-3 curriculum. It would require schools tell parents if their child wants to change their name or preferred pronouns or seek counseling.

Additionally the bill requires schools to establish a means for parents to learn about “the nature and purpose of clubs and activities offered at their child’s school” while establishing a means for parents to object to textbooks and supplementary instructional materials.

In other states, similar legislation has been dubbed by critics the ‘Don’t say gay’ bill.

Sen. Jay Chaudhuri questioned the timing of House Bill 755, coming just hours after a mass shooting at a Texas elementary school that left 19 children and two teachers dead.

“I’ll say it again, the right I care about is the right to keep our children safe in schools,” said the Wake County democrat.

Chaudhuri noted that children cannot learn if they don’t feel safe in their school.

“As a parent, I would hope we wouldn’t debate a bill that seeks to restrict what is taught to elementary school students, but instead determine how we can protect these elementary school students from school shootings, because censoring school curriculums isn’t gonna keep our kids alive.”

Sen. Mike Lee (R-New Hanover)

Committee chair Sen. Mike Lee (R-New Hanover) clearly angry was quick to criticize Chaudhuri for diverting attention from the bill to Tuesday’s mass shooting.

“This about not teaching five, six, seven, eight-year-olds things that are not age appropriate. This is about parent having the opportunity to participate in their children lives,” Lee responded.

Chaudhuri said he was not using the bill as a political platform.

“I am simply reflecting the emails and communications that came into my office in the last 24-hours that expressed outrage about the fact that we are doing nothing to keep our children safe.”

EqualityNC also rejected the notion SB755 would protect students.

“We face a teacher shortage and the NC GOP wants to make your teachers a target for extremists to harass and sue,” the LGBTQ+ rights organization tweeted.

Another aspect of the bill states health care provider who provide treatment for a child without first obtaining written consent from that child’s parent could face disciplinary action and a fine of $5,000.

HB 755 will be heard Thursday at 10:00am in the Senate Health Care Committee.

Click below to hear Sen. Chaudhuri’s remarks:

 

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