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Virginia Regulatory Town Hall
Department 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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1/6/21  3:38 pm
Commenter: Alex Weathersby

Support This Guidance and Trans Students

As an educator who has worked in Harrisonburg, Fredericksburg, and Charlottesville, I support this guidance. Studies have shown that affirming policies like the K-12 guidance reduce the risk of bullying, peer violence, harassment, suicidal thinking*. Transgender students deserve to feel supported and affirmed in educational spaces. They are then better equipped to learn, engage with peers, and positively contribute back into their communities. 

This guidance will help schools to provide the best learning environment possible for creating a truly equal Commonwealth. 

*Source: Russell S.T., Pollitt A.M., Li G., & Grossman A.H. (2018). Chosen name use is linked to reduced depressive symptoms, suicidal ideation, and suicidal behavior among transgender youth. Journal of Adolescent Health, 63(4), 503–505.

CommentID: 88645