Fargo Public School’s letter to recruit Florida teachers circulates on social media

Published: Aug. 17, 2022 at 12:47 AM CDT
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FARGO, N.D. (Valley News Live) - A letter from Fargo Public Schools sent to Florida teachers is gaining national attention.

FPS sent the letter back in April, in reference to the Parental Rights Bill, which some critics have called the “Don’t Say Gay” bill.

“To show support for educators in Florida that may not feel supported by the legislation that was passed,” said Dr. Rupak Gandhi.

The newly enacted law prohibits lessons on sexual orientation and gender identity for kids in kindergarten through 3rd grade in Florida schools.

Gandhi, one of the four authors of the letter, says the letter could help attract teachers to the state, who are bothered by the Sunshine state’s new law

“We are always recruiting. We just wanted to share that we are working towards becoming a welcoming environment,” he said.

The letter begins with what FPS says is an important statement, “we are way ok with saying gay, or straight, or LGBTQ+.

Commissioner John Strand and North Dakota U.S. House Representative Joshua Boschee are also authors of the letter.

In response to the legislation, Strand said “I’m not going to tell teachers how to teach. They know best.”

Boschee, a member of the LGBTQ+ community, told Valley News Live, “I am not alone when I say that it was in fact an educator who was one of the first adults who supported us to be who we are.”

Not everyone is a fan of the letter.

Republican State House candidate Ethan Harsell tweeted FPS’s letter, which also received criticism from Florida Governor Ron DeSantis’s office.

Desantis’s Rapid Response Director Christina Pushaw tweeted “Lol bye” in response to the letter.

She also added in a comment “Fargo can have them.”

Dr. Gandhi says the district will continue to stand by its decision to send the letter.

“We are proud of the letter and we have nothing to hide behind.”

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