Virginia Regulatory Town Hall
Department of Education
State Board of Education
Guidance Document Change: Every day, throughout the Commonwealth of Virginia, educators and school leaders work to ensure that all students have an opportunity to receive a high-quality education. As a part of that work, educators strive to meet the individual needs of all students entrusted to their care, and teachers work to create educational environments where all students thrive. The Virginia Department of Education (the “Department”) recognizes that each child is a unique individual with distinctive abilities and characteristics that should be valued and respected. All students have the right to attend school in an environment free from discrimination, harassment, or bullying. The Department supports efforts to protect and encourage respect for all students. Thus, we have a collective responsibility to address topics such as the treatment of transgender students with necessary compassion and respect for all students. The Department also fully acknowledges the rights of parents to exercise their fundamental rights granted by the Fourteenth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution to direct the care, upbringing, and education of their children. The Code of Virginia reaffirms the rights of parents to determine how their children will be raised and educated. Empowering parents is not only a fundamental right, but it is essential to improving outcomes for all children in Virginia. The Department is mindful of constitutional protections that prohibit governmental entities from requiring individuals to adhere to or adopt a particular ideological belief. The First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution guarantees religious freedom and prohibits the government from compelling speech that is contrary to an individual’s personal or religious beliefs. The Department embarked on a thorough review of the Model Policies Guidance adopted on March 4, 2021 (the “2021 Model Policies”). The 2021 Model Policies promoted a specific viewpoint aimed at achieving cultural and social transformation in schools. The 2021 Model Policies also disregarded the rights of parents and ignored other legal and constitutional principles that significantly impact how schools educate students, including transgender students. With the publication of these 2022 Model Policies (the “2022 Model Policies”), the Department hereby withdraws the 2021 Model Policies, which shall have no further force and effect. The Department issues the 2022 Model Policies to provide clear, accurate, and useful guidance to Virginia school boards that align with statutory provisions governing the Model Policies. See Code of Virginia, § 22.1-23.3 (the “Act”). Significantly, the 2022 Model Policies also consider over 9,000 comments submitted to the Department during the public comment period for the 2021 Model Policies.
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10/26/22  11:50 pm
Commenter: Believer in Science


Parents have the natural duty and right to help their children navigate the vicissitudes, insecurities, and doubts of their childhood. Even though there are pediatricians and mental health professionals who are informed by their ideology instead of science to encourage gender dysphoria, the fact is pediatric professionals have always held that if a child doesn’t know her/his gender, it is a sign of serious mental breakdown or sickness, and/or abuse of that child. What 6th grader has ever been perfectly comfortable with her/his looks and body?! Pre-pubescent and teen years need the steady, loving, calming and affirming guidance of the parents. The gender of a person is the most basic biological fact. Parents need to be informed and involved in helping their confused and / or abused children when it comes to them questioning their biology, just as parents need to give their permission for their child to go on a field trip, take an aspirin at school, and get help for anorexia. A parent shouldn’t be forced to accept the condition of gender dysphoria any more than they should have to accept the new “identity” of their girl as anorexic. A person should never be encouraged to identify themselves with their abuse - it is the epitome of injustice.

CommentID: 202953