A New Jersey father is suing his local school district for adopting a policy that does not notify parents when a student identifies as transgender and changes their name or preferred pronoun, calling the protocol “out of whack.”Frederick Short argued in the suit filed earlier this month in federal court that the Cherry Hill Public Schools is violating parents’ Fourteenth Amendment rights with its transgender policy.“I don’t agree with the policy,” Short, who has three children still in the school district, told the Philadelphia Inquirer.“To me, it’s so out of whack that a parent doesn’t have the right to know what’s going on in their child’s life,” he said. “I just want to know.”Short and his attorneys contend that the policy violates his and other parents’ rights to determine healthcare for their children, and is seeking to rescind the policy or at least add a provision that would allow for parental involvement.The suit also names state Board of Education officials as defendants for issuing guidance to school districts suggesting officials conceal a transgender student’s identity from their parents.Under the Cherry Hills policy, which was adopted in 2019, “A transgender student shall be addressed at school by the name and pronoun chosen by the student, regardless of whether a legal name change or change in official school records has occurred.”If a parent or guardian objects to the student’s name change or the pronoun used to describe the student in school records, staff would consult the board’s attorney regarding the student’s civil rights.But, it says, the student’s chosen name and pronoun should continue to be used in school.The policy is modeled after one the New Jersey Department of Education recommended school districts implement, which says: “School personnel may not disclose information that may reveal a student’s transgender status except as allowed by law.”“The guidance actively promotes deceit, wherein confidential conversations — regarding the very grave subject matter of gender identity — are conducted outside the realm of the family circle, where such conversations should rightfully be,” the lawsuit says.Attorney Thomas Stavola Jr. also noted a similar case in the Kettle Moraine School District in Wisconsin, where a judge declared that the schools violated parental rights by adopting a policy to honor a minor student’s request to change their gender identity at school without parental consent.He also noted that several mental health professionals cited in that case spoke of the benefits of parental involvement in providing healthcare to transgender children and of the dangers of children living a double life between home and school.“It’s just not right,” Short told the Inquirer. “They can technically live a double life, and a parent wouldn’t know it.“I would be mad at the school for hiding all of this stuff,” he said, noting that he does not believe any of his three children at Cherry Hills High School West identify as transgender.Short said he hopes the school can reach a “middle ground” that includes parents, counselors and social workers when deciding whether to use a student’s preferred gender or name.Stavola also said parents should be presumed fit to raise their children, barring any clear evidence to the contrary, according to NJ.com.The school district now has 21 days to respond to the lawsuit, which could pave the way for a potential US Supreme Court case.The Post has reached out to Cherry Hills Public Schools and the state Department of Education for comment.Meanwhile, several school districts in the state have already reversed their policies allowing for school officials to use a student’s preferred name or pronoun without first contacting parents.In townships like Hanover, Middletown and Marlboro — as well as the Manalapan-Englishtown Regional Board of Education, officials ruled that staff must now notify parents when gender non-conforming students want to change their names or be called by new pronouns.Three districts in Monmouth County and one in Morris County also adopted policies requiring educators to notify a transgender student’s parents or guardians.
25 Ekim 2023 - 19:30
New Jersey dad sues school district over transgender policy that allows children to change names and gender without parental consent
A New Jersey father is suing his local school district for adopting a policy that does not notify parents when a student identifies as transgender and changes their name or preferred pronoun — a pr…
25 Ekim 2023 - 19:30