Sununu signs school anti-discrimination bill

CONCORD, N.H. (AP) — Republican Gov. Chris Sununu has signed a bill aimed at better protecting New Hampshire children from discrimination at school.

The new law prohibits discrimination against students in public schools based on characteristics including age, race, sex, gender identity and sexual orientation.

Supporters said there was a gap in existing law because while federal anti-discrimination laws apply in schools, the state's new civil rights unit does not have jurisdiction over such matters. In a statement Thursday, Sununu says children deserve the same protections provided to adults in housing, employment and public accommodations.

Critics had said the bill raised too many questions, including whether it would apply to students discriminating against peers, and how it might affect school athletic programs. Sununu said officials will carefully monitor implementation and propose changes if necessary.