Agencies | Governor
Virginia Regulatory Town Hall
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Department of Education
 
Board
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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2/3/21  7:23 pm
Commenter: Quillin M

Fully SUPPORT These Policies
 
I support these model policies for LGBTQ students in Virginia. It is essential that children and youth be able to learn without suffering discrimination or harassment. A national survey by GLSEN has found that 75% of transgender youth feel unsafe at school, and those who are able to persevere had significantly lower GPAs, were more likely to miss school out of concern for their safety, and were less likely to plan on continuing their education. According to the Trevor Project LGBTQ youth are FIVE times more likely to attempt suicide than their heterosexual cisgender peers. I spent many years working with the Virginia Anti-Violence Project and heard from diverse community members about their lived experiences as transgender youth in Virginia. I saw the need for Virginia schools to have model policies to protect LGBTQ youth as many of the youth experienced bullying/harassment/ and discrimination.
These policies will promote the critical goal of keeping students safe to the best of our abilities. Schools have a moral and legal obligation to protect their students from this kind of harassment at school. These policies are necessary. The policies lay out how schools can prevent gender-based harassment or address it effectively to support and protect students if harassment occurs. These policies will help transgender students feel safe and respected at school, which is necessary for them to have equal access to education.
CommentID: 96214