Agencies | Governor
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  6:31 pm
Commenter: Dr. G.S. Rosenthal

Trans Educator Here. I Support this Document.

As a transgender educator based in Virginia, I have worked closely with transgender and gender non-conforming youth for the past six years, and I know quite well—better than many of the other commentators here—the many barriers that trans students currently face. Even in my own adult life, I have faced situations wherein people have refused to use my correct name or my pronouns. I have been mistreated when seeking services, including medical assistance. I have had to jump through many hoops in order to get access to the same basic protections and rights that so many cisgender Virginians enjoy. Transgender students in Virginia face these same challenges yet amplified even further by the circumstances of their age and their lack of agency in their educational settings. All of the model policies outlined in this guidance document are a step in the right direction: they provide clear guidance for school systems in how to create safe and supportive educational settings for transgender and gender non-conforming students. Title IX stipulates that a student's access to education cannot be limited on the basis of sex. To that end, we must act to protect the rights of students to be free from gender-based discrimination and harassment in our schools. I wish when I was a student, back in the day, that these policies had been in place. Let's act now to make our schools safer for the young people of today and tomorrow. I support this guidance document 100% and I am grateful to all the people that worked on it.

CommentID: 88662