Hundreds of central Florida high school students will not receive their yearbooks until photos of them displaying rainbow flags and LGBT messages are covered up in each yearbook. The photos were taken during a protest in opposition to a new Florida law prohibiting sex and gender instruction for young children.
The images were taken during a March student walkout against the state's Parental Rights in Education Act, Lyman High School Principal Michael Hunter said in a Monday statement.
The "pictures and descriptions" were not "caught earlier in the review process," according to Hunter.
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The law, which was signed by Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, prohibits instruction related to sexual orientation or gender identity for students in third grade and below.
"Rather than reprinting the yearbook at substantial cost and delay, we have elected to cover that material that is out of compliance with board policy so that yearbooks can be distributed as soon as possible," Hunter said.
Reprinting the roughly 600 yearbooks would cost at least $45,000, the yearbook's faculty adviser Danielle Pomeranz said.
Stickers will be used to cover the images and captions relating to the March walkout, Pomeranz said.
Students at Lyman have not taken kindly to the idea.
"This really shouldn't be happening because all we did as journalists was document what was happening at our school on our campus," Skye Tiedemann, editor-in-chief of the yearbook, said. "To have that covered up isn't right ... This is censorship."
A Monday yearbook signing party had to be canceled due to the "censorship," Tiedemann said.
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Other students have launched a "Stop the Stickers" hashtag on social media, and a peaceful protest is planned for Tuesday's Seminole County School Board meeting, the report noted.