Tuesday, December 13, 2022

Sen. Rogers pushes to protect parent-child discussions re: orientation, gender identity

Sen. Rogers pushes to protect parent-child discussions regarding orientation and gender identity

OKLAHOMA CITY (Dec. 9th) – Sen. Cody Rogers, R-Tulsa, is planning to file legislation that ensures parents remain in control of conversations and actions regarding their children’s gender identity and sexual orientation. The measure requires that district school boards put procedures in place notifying parents of any changes or issues their student is having related to their mental, emotional, or physical health or well-being.

The legislation encourages discussions between parents and their children regarding their current conditions and concerns. School personnel would be responsible for recommending students have these conversations at home with a parent or legal guardian.

“Children are in school to learn, not to be indoctrinated through inappropriate conversations that do not follow state standards,” Rogers said. “The health and safety of students is a top priority, and this bill ensures that parents, school staff and the student are all on the same page about what is best for the child’s well-being.”

The bill would also prohibit classroom instruction on sexual orientation and gender identity for kindergarten through third grade. School personnel or third parties would not be able to have discussions that were not age or developmentally appropriate in any K-12 classroom. Under this legislation, parents of K-3rd grade students would be provided any questionnaire or health screening forms and must consent to the form before it is passed out to their child.

“This measure ultimately ensures that parents have rights and know what their children are being exposed to at school,” Rogers said. “The bill relates to sensitive topics that are outside of approved state curriculum, and the intent is not to treat students differently based on how they identify.”

The deadline to file legislation ahead of the 2023 session is Jan. 19. The session formally convenes on Feb. 6.


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