Florida Senate - 2016                                    SB 1056
       By Senator Bullard
       39-00522B-16                                          20161056__
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act relating to education in public schools
    3         concerning human sexuality; providing a short title;
    4         requiring public schools that provide certain
    5         information or programs to students relating to human
    6         sexuality to provide information that meets specified
    7         criteria; providing definitions; requiring schools to
    8         make certain curriculum available to parents and
    9         guardians upon request; authorizing students to be
   10         excused from certain portions of a program or class
   11         under certain circumstances; prohibiting an excused
   12         student from disciplinary action, academic penalty, or
   13         any other form of punishment for being excused;
   14         authorizing a parent or guardian to seek review of a
   15         school’s compliance; providing for district school
   16         superintendents, district schools boards, and the
   17         Commissioner of Education to review compliance and
   18         take corrective actions; repealing s. 1003.46, F.S.,
   19         relating to health education and instruction in
   20         acquired immune deficiency syndrome; providing for
   21         severability; providing an effective date.
   23         WHEREAS, fifty-nine percent of all pregnancies in Florida
   24  are described as “unintended,” and, in 2010, Florida spent $1.3
   25  million on births resulting from unintended pregnancies, and
   26         WHEREAS, in 2013, Florida had the 29th highest birthrate
   27  among women between the ages of 15 to 19, and Florida was one of
   28  only three states whose number of births rose in 2012 and 2013,
   29  and
   30         WHEREAS, between federal fiscal years 1996-1997 and 2009
   31  2010, Congress disbursed a total of over 1.5 billion tax dollars
   32  into abstinence-only-until-marriage programs, with funding for
   33  such programs continuing today, and
   34         WHEREAS, scientific evidence contends that comprehensive
   35  sex education helps adolescents withstand social pressures and
   36  promotes healthy, responsible, and mutually protective
   37  relationships once adolescents do become sexually active and
   38  that withholding such information contributes to uninformed
   39  adolescents who can carry habits and misinformation into
   40  adulthood, and
   41         WHEREAS, adolescents and young adults between the ages of
   42  15 to 24 account for nearly half of the 20 million new cases of
   43  sexually transmitted infections each year and, in 2014, 16
   44  percent of reported new HIV infections were from individuals
   45  under the age of 25, and
   46         WHEREAS, Florida has the 4th highest number of syphilis
   47  cases in the nation and, in 2013, had the highest rate of new
   48  HIV infections, and
   49         WHEREAS, providing adolescents with comprehensive and age
   50  appropriate sex education will give them the information
   51  necessary to make responsible decisions about their sexual
   52  health and provide a common-sense solution to reducing
   53  unintended adolescent pregnancies and cases of sexually
   54  transmitted diseases, NOW, THEREFORE,
   56  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   58         Section 1. The Florida Healthy Adolescent Act.—
   59         (1) This section may be cited as the “Florida Healthy
   60  Adolescent Act.”
   61         (2) Each public school that directly or indirectly receives
   62  state funding and that provides information, offers programs, or
   63  contracts with third parties to provide information or offer
   64  programs regarding human sexuality, including family planning,
   65  pregnancy, or sexually transmitted infections prevention,
   66  including the prevention of HIV and AIDS, shall provide
   67  comprehensive, medically accurate, and factual information that
   68  is developmentally and age appropriate.
   69         (3) As used in this section, the term:
   70         (a) “Comprehensive information” means information that:
   71         1. Helps young people gain knowledge about the physical,
   72  biological, and hormonal changes of adolescence and subsequent
   73  stages of human maturation;
   74         2. Develops the knowledge and skills necessary to protect
   75  young people with respect to their sexual and reproductive
   76  health and to promote an understanding of sexuality as a normal
   77  part of human development;
   78         3. Helps young people gain knowledge about responsible
   79  decisionmaking;
   80         4. Is culturally competent and appropriate for use with
   81  students of any race, gender, gender identity, sexual
   82  orientation, and ethnic and cultural background;
   83         5. Develops healthy attitudes and behaviors concerning
   84  growth, development, and body image;
   85         6. Encourages young people to practice healthy life skills,
   86  including negotiation and refusal skills, to assist in
   87  overcoming peer pressure and using effective decisionmaking
   88  skills to avoid high-risk activities;
   89         7. Promotes self-esteem and positive interpersonal skills,
   90  focusing on skills needed to develop healthy relationships and
   91  interactions, and provides young people with the knowledge and
   92  skills necessary to have healthy, positive, and safe
   93  relationships and behaviors; and
   94         8. Includes medically accurate information about all
   95  methods of contraception and each method’s effectiveness rate,
   96  including, but not limited to, abstinence.
   97         (b) “Developmentally and age appropriate” means suitable
   98  for particular ages or age groups of children and adolescents
   99  and based on the developing cognitive, emotional, and behavioral
  100  capacity typical for that age or age group.
  101         (c) “Factual information” includes, but is not limited to,
  102  medical, psychiatric, psychological, empirical, and statistical
  103  statements.
  104         (d) “Medically accurate information” means information
  105  relevant to informed decisionmaking that is based on scientific
  106  evidence; consistent with generally recognized scientific
  107  theory; conducted under accepted scientific methods; published
  108  in peer-reviewed journals; and recognized as accurate,
  109  objective, and complete by mainstream professional
  110  organizations, including the American Medical Association, the
  111  American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, the
  112  American Public Health Association, and the American Academy of
  113  Pediatrics, government agencies, including the United States
  114  Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the United States
  115  Food and Drug Administration, the United States Department of
  116  Health’s National Institutes of Health, and scientific advisory
  117  groups, including the Institute of Medicine and the Advisory
  118  Committee on Immunization Practices. The deliberate withholding
  119  of information that is needed to protect the life and health of
  120  an individual is considered medically inaccurate.
  121         (4)(a) Each public school that provides information, offers
  122  programs, or contracts with a third party to provide information
  123  or offer programs regarding human sexuality under this section
  124  must provide the curriculum for review to a parent or guardian
  125  upon request.
  126         (b) A student may be excused from the portion of a program
  127  or class that provides information relating to human sexuality
  128  pursuant to this section upon written request by the student’s
  129  parent or guardian. A student excused from the program or class
  130  may not be subject to disciplinary action, academic penalty, or
  131  any other form of punishment for being excused from that portion
  132  of the program or class.
  133         (5)(a) The parent or guardian of a student who is enrolled
  134  in a school subject to the requirements of subsection (2) may
  135  file a complaint with the district school superintendent if the
  136  parent or guardian believes the school is not in compliance with
  137  such requirements. Within 30 days after receipt of a complaint,
  138  the district school superintendent shall take any warranted
  139  corrective action and provide the complainant and the school
  140  principal with written notice of the corrective action, if any,
  141  that was taken.
  142         (b) A parent or guardian who is not satisfied with the
  143  district school superintendent’s response to the filed complaint
  144  may file an appeal with the district school board within 30 days
  145  after receiving the district school superintendent’s written
  146  notice of any corrective action or, if notice was not timely
  147  provided under paragraph (a), within 60 days after the complaint
  148  was filed with the district school superintendent. Within 30
  149  days after receipt of an appeal under this paragraph, the
  150  district school board shall take any warranted corrective action
  151  and provide the appellant and the district school superintendent
  152  with a written notice of what, if any, corrective action was
  153  taken.
  154         (c) A parent or guardian who is not satisfied with the
  155  district school board’s response to such an appeal may file an
  156  appeal with the Commissioner of Education within 30 days after
  157  receiving the district school board’s written notice of any
  158  corrective action taken or, if notice was not timely provided
  159  under paragraph (b), within 60 days after the appeal was filed
  160  with the school board. The commissioner shall investigate the
  161  claim and make a finding regarding compliance with subsection
  162  (2). Upon a finding of substantial noncompliance, the
  163  commissioner shall take corrective action, including, but not
  164  limited to, notifying the parent or guardian of each student
  165  enrolled in the school that the school is in violation of state
  166  law.
  167         Section 2. Section 1003.46, Florida Statutes, is repealed.
  168         Section 3. If any provision of this act or its application
  169  to any person or circumstance is held invalid, the invalidity
  170  does not affect the remaining provisions or applications of the
  171  act which can be given effect without the invalid provision or
  172  application, and to this end the provisions of this act are
  173  severable.
  174         Section 4. This act shall take effect July 1, 2016.