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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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1/14/21  10:39 pm
Commenter: Barbara Rice

draft transgender student policies misguided

The goal of providing a safe and wholesome environment to students, faculty, and staff is a commendable one.  The proposed guidelines, however, are misguided and overreaching.  Restroom and locker room privacy will no longer be guaranteed:  "Access to facilities such as restrooms and locker rooms that correspond to a student's gender identity shall be available to all students." (p. 18)  "School staff should not confront students about their gender identity upon entry into the restroom." (p. 18)  Schools will be able to discipline students or staff for not using desired pronouns (pp. 10, 12), will not inform parents of restroom privacy issues (information about a student's transgender status is regarded as "particularly sensitive" and shall not be disclosed . . . p.12), and could interrogate or discipline children without parental knowledge (p. 10).  These are just a few of the problems in the proposed guidelines.  Please do not enact them.

CommentID: 90108