Virginia Regulatory Town Hall
Department of Education
State Board of Education
Guidance Document Change: The Model Policies for the Treatment of Transgender Students in Virginia’s Public Schools guidance document was developed in response to House Bill 145 and Senate Bill 161, enacted by the 2020 Virginia General Assembly, which directed the Virginia Department of Education to develop and make available to each school board model policies concerning the treatment of transgender students in public elementary and secondary schools. These guidelines address common issues regarding transgender students in accordance with evidence-based best practices and include information, guidance, procedures, and standards relating to: compliance with applicable nondiscrimination laws; maintenance of a safe and supportive learning environment free from discrimination and harassment for all students; prevention of and response to bullying and harassment; maintenance of student records; identification of students; protection of student privacy and the confidentiality of sensitive information; enforcement of sex-based dress codes; and student participation in sex-specific school activities, events, and use of school facilities.
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1/5/21  9:02 am
Commenter: Concerned citizen

Forced Speech

This is a complex issue and I certainly recognize that those who don't believe that their gender conforms with their sex must find navigating through school challenging. However, this response is not only ultimately damaging for them, but also a real abrogation of the rights of others.

In no other situation do we allow minors to make an assertion and force adults to accept it without question. Adults have a responsibility to direct, guide and nurture  youth through difficult experiences. This proposal forces adults to be negligent in that duty.

Further, despite citing the first amendment right of freedom of speech, no thought appears to be given to the very notion of forcing school staff to speak a certain way. Is there any other time we force people to use words they believe to be false? 

This proposal will only deepen divisions in our state and country and further alienate many people from the public school system. I wholeheartedly call on you to reject this guidance document.

CommentID: 88156