It’s always good to see schools preemptively adapt to their students. A school district in Clifton Park, New York has started the process to officially allowing transgender students to use the bathroom of the gender they identify with. This is the first case that I’ve seen where a school began putting policies like this up for a vote without any legal pressure or public pressure related to a current student. They will require the students to have some sort of “documentation” (presumably a doctor’s note or some other medical personnel’s diagnosis with gender identity disorder, or something similar), as well as permission from high-ranking school officials. I would guess that these restrictions were put into place to help quell some adult concerns about sexual assaults and boys sneaking into the women’s room. In my opinion, it would be incredibly difficult for a teenage boy to truly, passably, fake being transgender, but apparently not everyone agrees with that. The school makes a point to specify the “gender identity that the student exclusively and consistently asserts at school,” which is, again, a smart way to clarify that this is meant for students well into their transition.
Sex education has been a big topic for years now. Some states have better curriculum than others, but the bad ones tend to be absolutely awful. While this seems to be an easy topic for adults to throw around ideas relating to, you rarely hear opinions from those actually in the programs. I was pleasantly surprised to hear that in Nevada, groups of students are letting their school district know exactly what they think about the sex ed. program currently in place. Apparently, a comprehensive sex ed program was suggested (shocking!), and parents began to object. This article from alternet explains some of the *incredibly controversial* (insert sarcasm) things the comprehensive program plans to educate students on. Surprisingly, only 22 states require sexual education programs, and only 19 require any provided programs to be medically accurate. If you ask me (which no one did), the kids who are currently receiving and evaluating these programs in person should have a little bit more pull than the parents. We’re talking about a primarily high school program. There’s even a student talking about how the abstinence-based program made her, as a rape survivor, feel as though she was worthless. That’s worth listening to.