A guidance provided to Roseville teachers directs them to consult with transgender students on whether their gender identity should be revealed in “correspondence to home” or during parent-teacher conferences.
Alpha News was informed that an “LGTBQ+ Inclusion Guidance” was distributed to staff at the beginning of the school year and it does not appear to be available anywhere online for parents to view.
We asked Roseville Area Schools if parents have been made aware of the guidance, but the district did not respond to multiple requests for comment.
The guidance includes “components from various regulations and policies related to LGBTQ+ inclusion,” beginning with a list of terms like “gender binary” and “gender expansive” that teachers are directed to familiarize themselves with.
Every student has “the right to be addressed by a name and pronoun corresponding to their gender identity,” the guidance explains.
“Teachers should privately ask transgender or gender-expansive students how they want to be addressed in class, in correspondence to home, or at conferences with the student’s guardian,” it says.
The guidance then notes: “The fact that a student chooses to disclose their gender identity to staff or other students does not authorize school staff to disclose private information about the student. When contacting the parent/guardian of a transgender or gender-expansive student, school staff should use the student’s legal name and the pronoun corresponding to the student’s gender assigned at birth unless the student or parent/guardian has specified otherwise.”
It does clarify, however, that staff cannot withhold information on a student’s gender identity from a parent if the parent specifically asks for that information. In other words, if parents don’t know to ask, and a student doesn’t want their parents to know, it will be kept secret.
The guidance explains that parents are more likely to be aware when younger children are involved, but they may “play less of a role in an older student’s transition.”
“With regard to an older student, we recommend that school staff consult with the student before reaching out to the student’s parent/guardian,” it says. This is because some transgender students are “not openly transgender or gender-expansive at home due to reasons such as safety concerns or lack of acceptance.”
“School personnel should speak with the student first before discussing a student’s gender identity with the student’s parent/guardian,” the guidance reiterates. “For the same reasons, school personnel should discuss with the student how the school should refer to the student (e.g. appropriate pronoun use in written communication to the student’s parent/guardian).”
Roseville teachers are further advised to create an “inclusive classroom environment” by using “unbiased language.” They should also keep “gender and gender identity in mind for all classroom activities and health curricula.”
According to the guidance, teachers should not use gendered language or rely on gender as a means of dividing the class, instead using things like birthdays or clothing color.
“Many teachers may have the tendency to give directions, such as, ‘Boys line up here and girls line up there,’ which forces students to either ‘out’ their gender identity or to be categorized with a gender they may not identify with,” the guidance says.
“Finally, instead of greeting with, ‘Good morning, boys and girls,’ teachers can greet students by simply saying, ‘Good morning, students,’” it adds.
The district is required to allow students to participate in activities based on their gender identity “even in circumstances in which other students, parents, or community members raise objections or concerns.”
This means students can use bathrooms and locker rooms and play sports in accordance with their gender identity.
The directions included in the “LGBTQ+ Inclusion Guidance” are not unique to Roseville. In fact, an influential organization known as GLSEN has created a model policy for districts across the country that instructs schools to conceal gender transitions from parents.