School transgender policy introduced

A long-awaited proposed policy for the treatment of transgender students was introduced Monday during a special called meeting of the Pulaski County School Board.

No action was taken Monday by the board on the policy proposal, rather a vote on a final policy is set for the board’s meeting in August.

The policy was first posted to the school board’s BoardDocs platform, which is available for viewing by the public.

A public comment period during Monday’s meeting came near the end of the meeting agenda, immediately after the policy was presented. Comments were limited to three minutes and the comment period as a whole to one hour.

School Superintendent Dr. Kevin Siers said the policy and a survey link would be posted to the school system’s social media page and website.

Public comment, he said, could be submitted there and more could be made prior to the board’s action at the August meeting.

Siers noted that the transgender bathroom issue is now “a matter of law,” following a decision Monday by the U.S. Supreme Court not to hear an appeal that challenged the rights of transgender students to use the bathroom of their choosing.

The case involved Gavin Grimm and the Gloucester County, Va. School Board.

Grimm, who was born female but began to identify as a male during high school sued the school board after he was refused the choice to use a boy’s bathroom at school.

Lower federal courts upheld his right to use the boys bathroom and the school board appealed the case to the U.S. Supreme Court which refused to take up the case, meaning the lower court ruling stood.

No less than 19 people spoke out at the meeting on the policy, this time with about half the speakers promoting the policy and half opposed.

You can view the entire meeting and hear the comments on YouTube by searching for: “pulaski county school board meeting June 28, 2021.”