The state Department of Education in Virginia has issued new guidelines for schools, providing instructions on how teachers and administrators are to deal with the growing epidemic of students announcing that they are “identifying” as transgender, non-binary, “gender fluid,” or whatever other terms are making the rounds these days. They aren’t barring the schools from “recognizing” such announcements, but teachers are only to refer to students by new names or incorrect pronouns if the parents or guardians of the student provide written instructions requesting that their child be addressed in that fashion. This has far less to do with gender confusion or dysphoria than it does with basic parental rights. Schools will not be allowed to deceive parents and keep secrets from them when this sort of situation arises with their children. Of course, for reasons that nobody seems to be able to explain, some people are seeing this as a bad idea. (Washington Examiner)
The Virginia Department of Education released new policies Friday detailing how school districts should handle students who identify as transgender with a heavy emphasis on parental rights.
The new policies direct schools to only recognize “transgender students” if the child’s parent has requested in writing that the school address their child by a different gender identity.
“Parents have the right to make decisions with respect to their children,” the guidance states. “Policies shall be drafted to safeguard parents’ rights with respect to their child, and to facilitate the exercise of those rights.”
Of course, the WaPo described it as “Virginia will block schools from accommodating transgender students,” but I doubt many of you were surprised by that.
This move is being driven by Governor Glenn Youngkin, who campaigned in part on a platform promising to reform public education and ensure parental rights. The situation in the Fairfax County Public School District was likely what pushed Youngkin to move quickly on this issue. The district recently mandated a new training module for teachers that informed them how they could hide such things from parents and even change the students’ names on documents without informing the parents.
This really should have been a no-brainer and I remain shocked that anyone finds this even remotely controversial. If teachers suspect that there is some sort of actual abuse taking place in a student’s home (and to be clear, parents insisting on being informed of potential mental stability issues like this is not “abuse” in any way) they have established methods available to deal with it. This generally involves informing child protective services and allowing the experts to handle it. They should not just be making decisions involving gender dysphoria, particularly the current wave of “rapid onset” or “socially driven” gender dysphoria, on the fly. And they most certainly should not be hiding issues like this from the children’s parents.
If we could ask for any changes to this new policy, I would suggest that it’s missing an important element. If any teachers are discovered grooming gender-confused children toward any sort of medical intervention such as puberty blockers, hormone treatments, or even surgery, they should be immediately suspended and not be allowed near children in any capacity. Too many woke public schools are turning into indoctrination cults where children are led to believe that it’s “uncool” to be “cisgender” and all of the cool kids are gender-fluid in some fashion. This needs to stop.