By Rebecca Klein of Huffington Post, 08/09/2018:
A new anti-bullying program in Florida sounds so good on paper. The first of its kind in the nation, it gives public money to kids who have been victims of bullying and helps them attend private school. Florida Gov. Rick Scott (R) touted it as an example of government stepping in to do good.
The only problem is, not all victims are welcome. For some private schools participating in the program, LGBTQ students need not apply.
… A HuffPost analysis of private schools that have signed up to participate in the program shows that many of these schools enact their own form of state-sponsored bullying ― by refusing to admit LGBTQ students or outlining punishment for students in same-sex relationships. For this analysis, HuffPost studied the student handbooks and mission statements of schools that signed up for the Hope Scholarship Program.
As of Aug. 1, nearly 70 schools had signed up to participate in the program, although the organization granting the scholarships says it expects more schools to do so over the course of the next few months.
Of these schools, at least 10 percent have zero tolerance policies for LGBTQ students.
… Beyond discriminatory admissions policies, more than 30 percent of the nearly 70 schools use a curriculum that promotes bigoted views of LGBTQ students.