Release Date: November 4, 2022
County Citizens Defending Freedom
MIAMI-DADE: Miami-Dade County Citizens Defending Freedom (CCDF-Miami-Dade) filed a lawsuit against the Miami-Dade County Public School Board for violations of Florida Sunshine Law. CCDF-USA empowers local citizens to engage their public officials during the policy-making process to ensure accountability and transparency of their local government bodies, including school boards. During the course of Miami-Dade County Public School Board’s adoption of two human reproduction and disease education textbooks for the 2022-2023 middle school and high school curriculum, CCDF-Miami-Dade discovered that unelected committees exercised substantial governmental decision-making authority during meetings closed to the public.
As the lawsuit alleges, CCDF-Miami-Dade discovered the Instructional Materials Review Committee reviewed, ranked, and ultimately made a singular recommendation to the school board for adoption of a human reproduction and disease education publisher during committee meetings that were closed to the public. The unelected committee’s lack of accountability and transparency is counter to the protections the Sunshine Law is intended to promote. As a result, the entire process conducted outside of the Sunshine Law usurped the constitutional and statutory authority of the school board and violated the rights of citizens who are vested a Florida Constitutional right to attend public meetings.
CCDF-Miami-Dade acted in good faith to resolve the issue in an amicable manner without the need for legal action. However, county citizens and parents have a right to full government transparency and accountability over the materials their children are taught, particularly with adult themed subjects such as the human reproduction and disease education curriculum. CCDF-Miami-Dade stands ready to hold government officials accountable for breaches of liberty.