In the daily bulletin for upper school students on March 30th, 2022 known by students and families as the “Daily Information Board” or “DIB,” officials at Moses Brown, an independent school in Providence, Rhode Island, referred to the Florida Parental Rights in Education bill as a “don’t say gay” bill and asserted that a RI bill is another example of a “don’t say gay” bill. The daily bulletin announced an event to “show your allyship for the MB LGBTQ+ community during lunch on Wednesday to write a a letter to Rhode Island representatives, senators and Governor McKee. Examples of letter templates will be available.”
Several students indicated to PDE that pronoun pins were handed out during lunch on Wednesday. Below is a photo of one of the actual pins.
The following day, March 31, 2022, the bulletin was similar and included a more generalized push for students and families to write letters to their elected officials about the bill.
In both versions of the daily information board, school officials cite two specific concerns they have about the RI bill (H-7539)
- that the bill would “require trans students to use their birth names and pronouns unless their parent or guardian gives explicit permission to use a chosen name or correct pronouns.”
- that the bill would “ban discussions of race, gender and sexual orientation in schools.”
The full text of the bill is here.
This is not the first time PDE has been made aware of student lobbying in Rhode Island at the behest of school officials. Below is a story from Barrington, RI in March of 2021.