Texas attorney general accuses Austin school district of breaking state law during Pride week celebration

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Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton outside the Supreme Court in Washington, DC, in 2016. (Kevin Lamarque/Reuters)

The Texas attorney general on Tuesday accused the Austin Independent School District of violating state law by holding “Pride Week” celebrations on its campuses.

In one letter addressed to Superintendent Stephanie Elizalde, Ken Paxton alleged that “the district has, at best, undertaken a week-long educational effort on human sexuality without parental consent.”

“Or, worse, your district cynically pushes a week-long indoctrination of your students that not only fails to gain parental consent, but subtly cuts parents out of the loop. Either way, you are breaking state law,” he said.

“Each year to celebrate LGBTQIA+ students, staff, and families, Austin ISD hosts its own Pride Week, a time to highlight the district’s commitment to creating a safe, supportive, and inclusive environment,” tweeted the school district on Monday.

Paxton claimed that the Austin School District’s curriculum and lesson plans teach sexual orientation and gender ideology, which are referred to as ‘instructions on human sexuality’ requiring parental permission under law. of State.

The attorney general’s office also reportedly received reports of “community circles,” in which students discussed sensitive topics, likely without the knowledge of their parents, Paxton said. The school district also released “inspiration guides” applicable to all ages, “culminating in a ‘Pride Out’ party to be held on Saturday, March 26.”

Paxton warned Elizalde that parents can file complaints with the school board and the Texas Education Agency on the grounds that the district is acting illegally.

Pride week seems to be in full swing at Elemental Galindowho posted photos on Twitter on Monday showing the rainbow swag the school was giving to students as well as the decor including Pride flags, stickers, buttons, masks and signs.

In a tweet on Tuesday, Paxton criticized AISD’s LGBTQ+ programming as a violation of parental rights: “The Texas Legislature has made it clear that when it comes to sex education, parents, not school districts, are responsible. .”

Paxton’s message comes as Florida faces a gradual backlash to its recently passed Parental Rights in Education Bill, which prohibits the teaching of sexual orientation and gender ideology in schools. state grades K-3. Despite criticism, Governor Ron DeSantis doubled down on the legislation, affirming the right of parents to determine when and how it is appropriate to teach their young children about sexuality. DeSantis refused to bow to Disney, despite his lobbying efforts and protests from his employees.

A slim majority of American voters support Florida’s legislation, according to a POLITICO/Morning Consult poll released last week.

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