Under no circumstance does anyone deserve to be bullied, harassed, or discriminated against in their school, which is a place where they are supposed to be able to learn and be a part of a community that accepts them for who they are. It is during these formative years that schools teach students how to succeed, they also teach students how to treat each other.
It comes as no shock that transgender and nonbinary students report higher rates of victimization and discrimination than their peers, especially regarding respect for their names and pronouns and access to bathrooms and locker rooms. Transgender and nonbinary students should feel safe and included in their learning communities. This proposed rule will make Virginia schools a better place to learn for transgender and nonbinary students, which creates a better learning environment for all.
No matter what side of the aisle you are on, it is a fact that these students are our future. We cannot sacrifice their mental health and physical well being on divisive rhetoric. It is our responsibility create an environment set up for equitable success. Not failure.