Don’t Say Period: House Bill 1069


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Ron DeSantis, who will either deny or pass the “Don’t Say Period” bill.

Karly Scheder, Reporter

House Bill 1069, dubbed the “Don’t Say Period” bill, has recently been passed in March and is waiting for a signature or disapproval by Governor Ron DeSantis. Sponsored by Republican representative Stan McClain, it limits the discussion of sexually transmitted diseases, human sexuality, and related topics–which could include health on periods and the like. This is only effective until sixth grade.

So, what does that mean for children? If someone was to get their period in fifth grade and asked a teacher for help, that teacher would be unable, under this bill, to provide such help. Some believe that a change like this is for the better, and that topics like periods and sexuality are better left up to parents to explain. However, others believe that school is a safe space for children that must be able to know how to help in situations like this. Ashley Gantt, a representative of Florida’s District 109, asked McClain, “if little girls experience their menstrual cycle in fifth grade or fourth grade, will that prohibit conversations?” His response was that yes, it will prohibit conversations surrounding that topic for fourth or fifth graders who have questions or concerns about it in school, but claimed he didn’t want the restriction to act as a punishment.

This bill, although known mostly by its “Don’t Say Period” nickname, also requires that education on human sexuality includes instruction the “binary, stable, and unchanging nature of biological sex,” according to the House of Representatives Staff Analysis. Also, at a public K-12 public school, it is required that teachers and any other school staff can not refer to a student with a name or pronouns that do not fit the child’s assigned gender and name at birth.

In further detail, the bill also requires that teachers define “sex” as a person’s sexual identity that is determined biologically. According to McClain, the bill is supposed to bring “uniformity to sex education,” and, if a parent finds material inappropriate for their child, it can be challenged easier. Plus, it objects books that have to do with sexual content on the basis that it is “pornographic, harmful to minors, or describe or depict sexual conduct,” in which it must be removed from the circulation of the school within five days, also according to the summary analysis of the bill. All meetings discussing this are supposed to be open to the public.

Although it has not yet been signed, it is predicted that it will be approved by Ron DeSantis. If that is the case, everything will be put into effect July 1st of this year.