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Georgia bill would restrict teaching gender in private schools

A Georgia bill would require private schools to get parental permission before any instruction related to gender identity or queer theory.

A Georgia Senate committee is advancing a long-stalled proposal aimed at stopping private school teachers from talking to students about gender identity without parental permission, but both gay rights groups and some religious conservatives remain opposed to the bill.

Senate Bill 88, which majority Republicans on Tuesday passed out of the Senate Education and Youth Committee on a party-line vote, now says private schools would have to obtain written permission from all parents before instruction “addressing issues of gender identity, queer theory, gender ideology, or gender transition.”

“We worked in earnest to make this bill fair while still achieving our goal of making sure children’s parents are involved in a sensitive and often life-changing issue,” said Sen. Carden Summers, a Cordele Republican.

Liberal opponents say the measure, which goes to the full Senate for more debate, remains a thinly veiled attack on LGBTQ students.

“There has been no evidence presented that kids are being taught gender identity issues in school that would lead to any kind of confusion or coercion,” Jeff Graham, executive director of the LGBTQ advocacy group Georgia Equality, said after the hearing.

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