Bill To Ban Gender Neutral Words In Iowa HS Language Courses

Des Moines, Iowa — Teaching a gender-neutral version of Spanish, French, or any other language would not be allowed in Iowa schools under a bill that’s passed a subcommittee in the Iowa House.

Republican Representative Bill Gustoff of Des Moines says it’s not about pronouns in the English language, but in other languages, ALL nouns are masculine or feminine, and their articles and adjectives have to match.

Gustoff says he introduced the bill because a teacher told him they would be disciplined if they did not teach a gender-neutral version of a language. Gustoff says the teacher asked not to be publicly identified and Gustoff is not revealing the district where the teacher works. Tye Nyhus, a Spanish instructor in Des Moines, says teaching and using gender-neutral pronouns in class is important for some students.

Europeans have been debating the use of nouns coded as masculine and feminine. The agency that oversees usage of the Italian language has come out against gender-neutral terms. In November the French senate voted to ban the use of gender-neutral terms in government documents.

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