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AZ Senate bill would add criminal charges if sexual explicit content is shown in schools

Arizona Senate Republicans have passed  a bill taking aim at material allowed to be shown in public schools. Any school employee or contractor that mentions or shows sextually explicit material could face criminal charges. 

Democratic opponents say this could ban books such as "To Kill a Mockingbird" or "The Grapes of Wrath."

Democratic SeSen. nator Mitzi Epstein calls the bill ridiculous.

“It could result in a substitute teacher who is teaching a valid sex education class, a valid human health care class, and there’s one student in there who doesn’t have a permission slip and the teacher just didn’t know it, and now they go to prison," Epstein said.

She notes there are state law that protect children from pornography. The bill  now heads tothe House.

Jill Ryan joined KJZZ in 2020 as a morning reporter, and she is currently a field correspondent and Morning Edition producer.