Several House Education Committee members issue statement on bills limiting curriculum, preventing LGBTQ support in schools


STATE HOUSE – Ahead of hearings today before the House Education Committee on several bills aimed at limiting curriculum in public schools, committee members Rep. Justine A. Caldwell (D-Dist. 30, East Greenwich, West Greenwich), Rep. Rebecca Kislak (D-Dist. 4, Providence), Rep. Nathan W. Biah Sr. (D-Dist. 3, Providence), Rep. Megan L. Cotter (D-Dist. 39, Exeter, Richmond, Hopkinton), Rep. Susan R. Donovan (D-Dist. 69, Bristol, Portsmouth), Rep. Joshua A. Giraldo (D-Dist. 56, Central Falls), Rep. David Morales (D-Dist. 7, Providence) and Rep. Brandon T. Voas (D-Dist. 57, Cumberland, Central Falls) have issued the following statement about those bills as well as others concerning LGBTQ students’ rights:

“Rhode Island was founded as a place that welcomes diversity, and that is still one of our most important and cherished values today. All people deserve to feel at home and safe here, and children deserve to go to schools where their learning is not limited by political interference orchestrated by divisive out-of-state groups aimed at pushing our society and our schools backward toward prejudice. While the groups promoting these ideas may be vocal and are trying to cloak these bills in a veil of ‘individual freedom’ and ‘parental rights,’ we understand that most Rhode Islanders aren’t interested in becoming a state where we deny the basic rights of LGBTQ students, ban books and prohibit educators from teaching about the wrongs that have occurred in history. We are stronger when we support diversity and face the worst of our past. Failing to do so dooms us to repeat it, which is exactly the result such bills would have.

“We will not support bills that harm our schools, our students and our state in this way, and we are confident that such bills will not move forward in Rhode Island, where the vast majority of Rhode Islanders and their elected representatives would never want a narrow, backward political agenda to dictate public school curricula or to harm LGBTQ students. As Education Committee members, we will continue to work toward supporting schools in their efforts to provide our state’s children the well-rounded education they deserve.”