A space for sharing stories, ideas, and concerns for the SUNY LGBTQ2AI community.
“State Education Commissioner MaryEllen Elia today released the Transgender and Gender Nonconforming Guidance Document to school districts. The document, which has been transmitted to every public school district in the state, is intended to help districts foster an educational environment safe and free from discrimination for transgender and gender nonconforming (GNC) students. It includes information to help districts comply with local, state, and federal laws concerning bullying, harassment, discrimination, and student privacy, and meet schools’ obligation to provide all students with a safe and inclusive environment.
“The important thing we must do is to keep children safe,” Board of Regents Chancellor Merryl H. Tisch said. “Children cannot be expected to learn unless they feel welcome, safe, and comfortable at school. Every school should foster that kind of environment for all its students. This new document gives administrators practical guidance to ensure their schools are places where transgender and gender nonconforming students can focus on academics, friendships, and their interests instead of worrying about how they will be treated by school staff and their peers.”
“All students need a safe and supportive school setting to progress academically and developmentally,” Commissioner Elia said. “The Education Department is committed to providing all students, including transgender and gender nonconforming students, with an environment free from discrimination and harassment. We have a moral responsibility to foster civility in our schools, and to ensure that every student has equal access to educational programs and activities. This document will help schools make that a reality for all of our students.”
“Nationally, and in New York State, transgender and gender nonconforming students are targeted with physical violence and experience a hostile school environment at a higher rate than their lesbian, gay, and bisexual peers. Over the past several months, the Department has worked closely with advocacy groups and key stakeholders to prepare the New York State Transgender and Gender Nonconforming Students Guidance Document. This Guidance Document will be used by school boards and administrators to develop school procedures and district policies related to transgender and gender nonconforming students.
“The document provides guidance on using pronouns and handling issues like restroom and changing room use. The scenarios presented are all based on real-life examples from New York-based students and schools and the document will complement existing resources available from the New York State Education Department relating to the Dignity for All Students Act (DASA).”
Read More: NYSED