Jacksonville, FL - The organization coming under fire from one Northeast Florida State Representative for their potential “hidden agenda” says the claims are false.
Rep. Charles Van Zant says he has reservations about the American Institutes for Research, which was recently awarded a $220 million contract by Florida to write tests under the new Common Core guidelines.
“People ought to be concerned about us giving the contract to a company who has a strong LGBT support agenda,” Van Zant tells our partner Action News.
He believes AIR is trying to push youth toward homosexuality, evidenced through information posted on their website.
AIR’s website has a subsection for social development of LGBT youth. The page speaks about an adolescent’s journey in to adulthood, and the need for support at that time.
“A disproportionate number of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender youth experience physical and emotional abuse at home, in school and in their communities simply because of their identity,” the website reads.
Van Zant says he is particularly concerned about a guide for “understanding, supporting and affirming” LGBT youth posted on the webpage.
AIR’s Director of Public Affairs tells WOKV they are non-partisan, not-for-profit and not an advocacy group. He says their focus is “educational assessment, research, health policy research and communication, and international development” and further encourages people to explore the website for themselves.