Seminole County School Board opts out of censoring yearbook over 'Don't Say Gay' protest

click to enlarge Seminole County School Board opts out of censoring yearbook over 'Don't Say Gay' protest
Photo via Aileen Perilla for Orlando Weekly

The Seminole County School Board reversed course on their decision to censor Lyman High School's photos of a protest against Florida's "Don't Say Gay" bill.

The board voted unanimously on Tuesday not to go ahead with plans to censor the pages in question with full-page stickers, following widespread scrutiny of the move by teachers, students and the media.

School Board Vice Chair Abby Sanchez admitted that the move was a "mistake" and praised students who offered public comment on the matter for "bringing it to our attention."

Instead of the planned full-page stickers, a new sticker will point out that the protest was not school-sponsored. This was the justification given by administrators for the initial plan to block out the pages.

"The event depicted on the Lyman High School Yearbook page in question was not sponsored, endorsed, or promoted by the school or district.  As such, the manner by which it was depicted and displayed in the yearbook’s original layout did not comport with School Board policy," district rep. Michael Lawrence told Orlando Weekly.

"Rather than a costly reprint of the entire yearbook and lengthy delay in distribution to the school's Seniors and other students, the school has elected to cover that particular section."

The decision sparked outrage among many of the students, including the event photographer and staff related to the publication of the yearbook. The Seminole County School Board heard these objections and acted on them.

Stay on top of Central Florida news and views with our weekly newsletters, and consider supporting this free publication. Our small but mighty team is working tirelessly to bring you Central Florida news, and every little bit helps.


Since 1990, Orlando Weekly has served as the free, independent voice of Orlando, and we want to keep it that way.

Becoming an Orlando Weekly Supporter for as little as $5 a month allows us to continue offering readers access to our coverage of local news, food, nightlife, events, and culture with no paywalls.

Join today because you love us, too.

Scroll to read more Orlando Area News articles

Join Orlando Weekly Newsletters

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.