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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  12:43 pm
Commenter: Dr. Emily Goodman-Scott

I Support Policy

Greetings VDOE,

My name is Dr. Emily Goodman-Scott and I'm a previous school counselor and special educator, as well as a current associate professor in school counseling and the immediate-past chair of the VA School Counselor Association board. I specifically teach my graduate students (future school counselors) the importance of being an ally to students who identify as LGBTQ+, and we spend ample class time investigating strategies to build an inclusive school climate.

I was very pleased to see the impressive advisory board used to create this policy, and that the policy statement is based on best practices, research, and organizations dedicated to serving and advocating for students who identify as LGBTQ+. As this policy statement discusses, there is a tremendous need to support students who are transgender, and I appreciate that this policy statement is a place to begin with our Virginia schools.

Further, this policy appears to be in alignment with the ethical standards of the American School Counselor Association.

Thus, I am in full support of this proposed policy. Thank you for your commitment serving students in Virginia, and for promoting a more equitable and inclusive school community.


Emily Goodman-Scott, PhD

Associate Professor of Counseling, Old Dominion University 

CommentID: 88616