House sponsor stands by 'Don't Say Gay' ban

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- The Republican sponsor of a proposal to ban the teaching of gay issues to elementary and middle school students says he's not backing off the legislation despite concerns from GOP leaders.

The proposal is scheduled to be heard in the House Education Committee on Tuesday. But Rep. Joey Hensley of Hohenwald told The Associated Press he plans to delay the measure for up to three weeks to work out its language.

The legislation, known as the "Don't Say Gay" bill, would limit all sexually related instruction to "natural human reproduction science" in kindergarten through eighth grade.

House Speaker Beth Harwell has called for further review of the bill and Gov. Bill Haslam would prefer for it to be dropped. Hensley, however, said he's moving forward with the proposal this session.

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