The Poudre School District in Colorado was the focus of an exclusive report by the Daily Caller this week, as their LGBTQ coordinator, Shayna Seitchik, trained school nurses on how to keep students’ gender transitions hidden from parents. This training, which took place on April 27, 2022, taught the nurses how to navigate sensitive topics such as “puberty-blocking medicines,” “hormone therapy,” “top surgery,” and chest “binders.”
The training emphasized the importance of students’ rights to express their gender identity openly and to decide when and with whom they share private information. Seitchik’s presentation also advised nurses to “always use a student’s affirming name” even if it hasn’t been legally changed.
Furthermore, Seitchik claimed that sharing information about a student’s transgender status with others, including parents, might violate FERPA (the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act). However, FERPA does not explicitly mention gender identity or prohibit sharing such information with parents.
How the hell many kids have been manipulated into this nightmare? https://t.co/xoPV5jnN9E
— Bob (@Bobsquestions) May 4, 2023
This issue is not unique to the Poudre School District, as more than 3.2 million public school students nationwide are affected by policies that prevent faculty and staff from disclosing a student’s gender status without the student’s permission. These policies span districts of all sizes and political affiliations across the nation.
With the Biden administration proposing new Title IX regulations that would allow school employees to withhold gender information from parents, a potential battle between the federal government and conservative states looms on the horizon.
Legal action has already been prompted in some districts, with opponents ranging from conservative to liberal. Critics of these policies argue that they violate parents’ constitutional rights under the United States Constitution and potentially many state constitutions. For example, Vernadette Broyles, who runs the conservative Child and Parental Rights Campaign, contends that such guidance infringes on parents’ right to privacy as established by FERPA and their 14th Amendment rights.
The debate surrounding parental involvement in students’ gender transitions is complex and multifaceted. While some argue that schools should respect students’ autonomy and protect their privacy, others believe that these policies undermine the fundamental role of parents in their children’s lives.
As school districts continue to grapple with how to support transgender and non-binary students, striking a balance between respecting students’ rights and acknowledging parental concerns remains a challenging task. Moreover, with the Biden administration’s proposed Title IX changes and ongoing legal battles, this issue is likely to stay at the forefront of education policy debates for the foreseeable future.