Republican Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds Friday signed several bills focused on education, including one controversial bill that bans education on gender identity and sexual orientation.
The bill, SF 496, now bans education on gender identity and sexual orientation in grades K-6 and requires parents to give permission for a student to be identified with pronouns that differ from those assigned at birth.
The bill also opens the door for parents to challenge what books are available in school libraries. Critics call the measure an attack on the LGBTQ+ community and limiting what teachers can talk about with kids that have questions.
Supporters say the bill is about giving parents more control over their kids' education.
“This legislative session, we secured transformational education reform that puts parents in the driver's seat, eliminates burdensome regulations on public schools, provides flexibility to raise teacher salaries, and empowers teachers to prepare our kids for their future," Reynolds said in a statement. "Education is the great equalizer and everyone involved – parents, educators, our children – deserves an environment where they can thrive.”