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Virginia Regulatory Town Hall
Agency
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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1/5/21  7:21 pm
Commenter: Cecelia Parks

Strongly support
 

I strongly support this document and the guidance it contains on creating inclusive and equitable environments for transgender youth. These measures will go a long way in supporting transgender students in Virginia schools, allowing them to pursue their education in schools that affirm their identity and don't harm their mental health. As the document points out, there are serious consequences such as increased rates of depression, suicide, and anxiety for transgender youth who are not supported. I have personal experience with this, as my sibling is transgender and did not feel that they could come out in high school and were very depressed.

Additionally, I urge that the Department of Education work with VHSL and other athletics organizations to allows transgender students to participate in the athletics programs that align with their gender. I also support the inclusion of information about all kinds of gender and sexuality throughout the curriculum, including Family Life Education.

CommentID: 88460