Fairfax County Public School District Rejects Gov. Youngkin’s Parental Rights Protections

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Sarah Weaver Social Issues Reporter
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The Fairfax County Public School District (FCPS) said Tuesday it plans not to enact Republican Virgina Gov. Glenn Youngkin’s model education policies that emphasize parental rights.

The Virginia Department of Education released a final version of its model policies for the state’s public schools in July. The policies provide safeguards for parental rights by keeping parents informed of their child’s “gender identity” and overall wellbeing. The policies will also notify parents of any bullying incidents in the school.

Fairfax County Public Schools students had planned to rally against adopting the policies, but the gathering turned into a celebration after they learned via email that the district had chosen to reject them, according to NBC Washington. (RELATED: ‘Gold Star For TJ’: Prestigious High School Will Now Mark ‘Honors’ Courses On Transcripts After Pushback)

“It was a relief. I know so many people still in FCPS who would’ve been impacted by these policies, tons and tons. It was honestly a relief when I saw the email,” Ranger Balleisen of the Pride Liberation Project said, the outlet reported.

“This is such a great feeling for us today — and I say us meaning myself and my student, my 15-year-old who’s an FCPS student who’s transgender — and again, he expressed a feeling of not being able to exist as himself when these policies came out,” one parent, Christina McCormick, said.

Governor Youngkin spokeswoman Macaulay Porter responded to the move from Fairfax County in a statement provided to the Daily Caller.

“The law requires the Virginia Department of Education to provide model policies and requires school boards to adopt policies consistent with those provided by the Department,” the spokeswoman told the Caller. “The Fairfax County Public Schools policies diverge from VDOE model policy guidance and perpetuate a false notion that FCPS knows what’s better for a child than a child’s parent. The Fairfax County school board is expected to follow the law.”

The superintendent of Arlington Public Schools announced in July he would not follow the model policies.

“These policies clarify that parents are the appropriate decision makers regarding their child’s health and wellbeing, and that students are best served when parents, teachers, and school administrators work as a team to support a child’s education. They also affirm that discrimination and bullying of any kind will not be tolerated in Virginia’s public schools,” Secretary of Education Aimee Guidera said in a press release after releasing the policies in July.