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  11:21 pm
Commenter: Cathy Tankersley

Fully approve of this Model Policy Guideline

This policy brings common sense changes back into the schools. As seen in Loudon County allowing biological boys professing to be girls in girl's bathrooms adds risks to girls. Privacy and safety for biological girls in bathrooms and dressing room/showers only makes sense. Furthermore, biological boys professing to be girls should not compete with girls in sports. Science proves these trans are superior in strength as chemical puberty blockers do not change their DNA, body structure, etc. Body mutilation and drugs do not make them women. Women are particularly vulnerable to being hurt in contact sports with these trans. Where trans compete against women, trans are overwhelmingly breaking all records because inherently they are not women. This is unfair to women and discriminatory to them. Parental, safety and privacy rights needs to trump other rights. 

This grooming of children to convince vulnerable children that they are of another sex is child abuse and needs to stop. To then hide it from their parents is wrong. Parents are the primary guardian for their children not the schools. Forcing others to use non biological pronouns for others is forcing them to participate in a charade that is unhealthy for all and violating others foundational beliefs. 

I feel sorry for children who have been groomed to deny the reality of their gender, have been convinced to take dangerous drugs and mutilate their body before they are of an age to really understand the consequences of those actions. We didn't see the escalation of confused children concerning gender years ago before this deceitful grooming started. These confused children need love, compassion and respect. They need counseling to help them to get to root causes for their unhappiness.  Not counseling that quickly rushes them into a life of dangerous drugs and surgeries that sterilize them and are risky. Procedures that are irreversible. Many trans are more suicidal after transition because the fix was not the cure to their root problems.

I fully support his Model Policy re Transgenderism in schools.

CommentID: 202796