Prepare For & Attend July 28 Transgender Policy Feedback Session


ACPS released a draft of the Policy on the Treatment of Transgender and Gender-Expansive Students on July 2, 2021.  Two full weeks later, on July 16, 2021, ACPS released the much-anticipated information about the planned July 28, 2021 community information session for this policy.  The press release can be found here.

This session will be a uni-directional, livestream presentation.  There will not be any opportunity for bi-directional community engagement during the session.  The only way for the community to engage with ACPS on this topic is via a newly established email address:

Details about the session:

Date/Time: July 28, 2021 6:30 pm

Livestream link:

Suggested Actions:

  • Review these implications of ACPS’s Transgender Policy and recommended readings below
  • Carefully evaluate the impacts of the policy, from multiple perspectives:
    • Consider protections needed for transgender children
    • Consider protections needed for all children
    • Consider protections for teachers
    • Consider protections for parents and families
    • Consider how the draft policy may positively or negatively impact all parties
  • Evaluate the cited sources in the policies, and ensure that facts presented are honestly and were developed with scholarly rigor
  • Evaluate where the boundary of the school should be when dealing with complex issues of this nature: How far is too far?  How far is not far enough?
  • Prepare substantive questions and comments (as soon as possible to allow for back and forth communications) and submit to

 Recommended Reading:

  • Read the GLSEN Model Local Education Policy, upon which both VDOE and ACPS policies are based, noting the following considerations:
    • There are several complexities in the law cited by this document.  See page 5, Privacy and Confidentiality, which implies that a court ruling found that students may prohibit schools from notifying parents of their gender identify because of their right to privacy. 
    • A somewhat biased reading of case law is used as the primary citation to support the portion of the policy allowing a school official to keep a student’s gender identity a secret from their parents; however the case ruling was actually against the student, citing that the student’s rights were not violated
    • This case law is complex and it does not appear that the complexity has been well-represented in the ACPS (or GLSEN or VDOE) policy
  • Consider some research flaws identified in the GLSEN Research Institute survey cited by both VDOE and ACPS policies
    • The GLSEN survey can be taken by anyone, of any age/gender status
    • The survey can be taken by the same individual numerous times
    • There is no data presented for a control group
    • There is no data presented for the specific hypothesis tested by the survey
    • The survey cannot influence a determination that LGBTQ+ students benefit from implementing a policy if the same students are not surveyed before and after a policy is implemented
    • The survey makes an unlikely presumption that 13-year old students have awareness of specific potential policy language and its effect