Subcommittee endorses bill to limit discussion of gender identity in Iowa schools

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Iowa State Capitol building(Storyblocks)
Published: Jan. 31, 2023 at 9:00 PM CST
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DES MOINES, Iowa (KTIV) - A subcommittee in the Iowa House has recommended passage of a bill that could limit what teachers can say about sexual orientation, and gender identity.

By a 2-to-1 vote, Tuesday afternoon, the House Education subcommittee sent House File 9 to the full House Education committee. It would prohibit schools from affirming, or recognizing, a student’s preferred gender identity in school without written consent from their parents.

Supporters emphasize the importance of keeping parents informed. “The Bible is the only history my family needs when discussing God’s creation,” said Pam Greneau, a concerned parent. “The opposition will try to portray us as being anti-LGBTQ, but that is simply not true. I just want to be able to discuss these matters at home with my children in the way that I see fit, as is my God-given right to do.”

Critics say the bill would require educators to “out” their transgender students. “When laws are being passed that say being LGBTQ is so shameful that schools can’t even discuss it, the emotional harm can be devastating,” said Erin Cavausos, a DMPS school counselor,” Silencing teachers, counselors and school staff will cause vulnerable students to be left isolated, unsupportive and afraid.”