Ron DeSantis proposes unilateral expansion of controversial 'Don't Say Gay' law: report

Ron DeSantis proposes unilateral expansion of controversial 'Don't Say Gay' law: report
DES MOINES, IOWA - MARCH 10: Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis speaks to Iowa voters gathered at the Iowa State Fairgrounds on March 10, 2023 in Des Moines, Iowa. DeSantis, who is widely expected to seek the 2024 Republican nomination for president, is one of several Republican leaders visiting the state this month. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images).

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis (R) is proposing an expansion to the Parental Rights in Education Act – more commonly known as the "Don't Say Gay" law – that would not require approval from lawmakers in the Sunshine State.

DeSantis, through his own executive authority, is seeking to "forbid classroom instruction on sexual orientation and gender identity in all grades," NBC News reported on Wednesday.

"The rule change would ban lessons on sexual orientation and gender identity from grades 4 to 12, unless required by existing state standards or as part of reproductive health instruction that students can choose not to take," the outlet noted. "The initial law that DeSantis championed last spring bans those lessons in kindergarten through the third grade."

READ MORE: Florida's 'Don't Say Gay' bill author facing up to 35 years in prison

The edict mandates that state employees "shall not harass or discriminate against any student on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, age, national or ethnic origin, political beliefs, marital status, handicapping condition, sexual orientation, or social and family background and shall make reasonable effort to assure that each student is protected from harassment or discrimination."

NBC also pointed out that DeSantis' anticipated 2024 White House bid is the crux of his embrace of right-wing culture wars.

READ MORE: 'Heartless aspiring autocrat': MSNBC legal analyst cautions Ron DeSantis is a 'danger to democracy'

NBC's full report is available here.

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