A California school district is considering reversing its transgender student policy to notify parents if their child is transitioning genders at school.
The Chino Valley Unified School Board heard arguments for the “parental notification” policy Thursday, which would require teachers and administrators to alert parents if their child requests to go by a different name or pronouns at school. The proposed policy was brought forward by Chino Valley School Board president Sonja Shaw, who partnered with Republican state Rep. Bill Essayli to draft the resolution. (RELATED: Parent Org Tracks Thousands Of Schools That Advise Teachers On How To Hide Gender Transitions From Parents)
“If I’m going to support something in Sacramento and I can do it here at our district level — to bring parents back into the picture and put protection for our children — it just makes sense to not look back,” Shaw told CBS News.
The policy is based on legislation Essayli proposed to the state legislature, which would have required public school administration to alert parents in writing if their child is changing their name and pronouns within three days of the student’s request.
“I do not believe that any school or teacher has the right to withhold information from parents,” Essayli told CBS News. “That’s in any context, whether they’re injured on the playground or beat up in a fight, or if they’re really struggling with really deep personal issues. Parents are the caretakers and got to know what’s happening with their kids.”
The Associated Chino Teachers Union is in opposition to the policy, claiming that alerting a parent that their child is transgender without their consent is illegal, CBS News reported.
“It’s important to us that students remain safe,” Brenda Walker, president of the Associated Chino Teachers Union, told CBS News.The school board voted 4-1 Thursday to ban Pride flags from district classrooms while updating its flag policy to note that the California state flag, the U.S. flag, other state flags and military flags can be displayed around campus, according to the Daily Bulletin, a California-based outlet.
Throughout the country, school districts are enacting policies which would keep students’ change in gender identity a secret from their parents; in North Dakota, a school district has decided to continue to keep hiding students’ gender transitions from parents even though state law prohibits such actions. The New York State Education Department released guidance in June suggesting that teachers keep students’ gender transitions a secret from their parents.
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