School officials should be mindful of privacy issues as they relate to students’ gender identity and sexual orientation and how those issues might be communicated to parents. The question of whether students have a right to have those statuses kept from their parents is one to consider carefully in the school setting and to be clearly communicated with school employees.
There is no clear answer, and a lot will depend on the circumstances of each case. For example, the age of the student in question is a factor. A much younger student expressing a gender identity other than the sex assigned to him/her at birth might warrant parental involvement due to developmental issues surrounding the situation. In that event, there might be a real and important need to communicate with parents regarding restroom facility accommodation, possible bullying and the like.
Guidance from the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR) and Department of Justice (DOJ), coupled with strong support from President Obama, with respect to the rights of transgendered students in public schools, has sparked a political firestorm.
A collection of Oklahoma education-related news of the week.
Funding for public schools in Oklahoma is a hot topic and for good reason. The State Department of Education (SDE) has issued a record number of emergency teacher certifications this year, and it seems each day brings a new story of teachers leaving Oklahoma for better pay in neighboring states.
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