The Guilford County Board of Education voted to approve revisions to three district policies that align with the state’s new Parents’ Bill of Rights. This includes removing instruction about gender and sexuality in some lower grades.
Senate Bill 49, known as the “Parents’ Bill of Rights,” became law in North Carolina in August.
This prompted GCS to make revisions to three policies to comply with the new legislation. Changes include a list of new student activities that require parental consent, and a requirement to notify parents if their student wants to use a different name or pronouns.
At a school board meeting on Tuesday, Policy Committee Chair T. Dianne Bellamy-Small explained another change related to health education.
“The revision includes the new state requirement prohibiting instruction on gender identity, sexual activity or sexuality in the curriculum for kindergarten through fourth grade," she said.
The policy states that the term “curriculum” refers to the standard course of study and instructional materials, not student-initiated questions or other communication.
The district received more than 30 written comments opposing the revisions, citing the potential harm and discrimination toward LGBTQ students.
But Board Member Michael Logan said he thought the health education policy didn’t go far enough, and was the only vote against it.
“It wasn't that I was against the policy, it’s that I felt it needed to go farther," Logan said. "The teaching of our fourth grade and younger students should be a prime concern for the public.”
The school board voted to approve the other two policies unanimously.
Amy Diaz covers education for WFDD in partnership with Report For America. You can follow her on Twitter at @amydiaze.