CCPS re­view­ing di­rec­tive on trans­gen­der bath­rooms

Cecil Whig - - FRONT PAGE - By JES­SICA IAN­NETTA

jian­netta@ce­cil­whig.com

— Ce­cil County Public Schools is not yet tak­ing a stance on the U.S. Depart­ment of Ed­u­ca­tion’s re­cent di­rec­tive telling public schools that trans­gen­der stu­dents should be al­lowed to use the bath­room that matches their gen­der iden­tity.

“We are cur­rently in the process of study­ing the spe­cific con­tents of the let­ter, and will then com­pare it to the guid­ance al­ready given to us by the Mary­land State Depart­ment of Ed­u­ca­tion,” Su­per­in­ten­dent D’Ette

ELKTON

Devine said in a state­ment. “Cur­rently, CCPS does not have a spe­cific pol­icy which ad­dresses this topic and we must de­velop a bet­ter un­der­stand­ing re­gard­ing the scope of the man­date be­fore we make any rec­om­men­da­tions to the Board of Ed­u­ca­tion.”

The school sys­tem’s re­sponse comes after the DOE on Fri­day sent out a let­ter to all public schools giv­ing guid­ance on the treat­ment of trans­gen­der stu­dents.

“When a school pro­vides sex-seg­re­gated ac­tiv­i­ties and fa­cil­i­ties, trans­gen­der stu­dents must be al­lowed to par­tic­i­pate in such ac­tiv­i­ties and ac­cess such fa­cil­i­ties con­sis­tent with their gen­der iden­tity,” the let­ter states.

The let­ter is not con­sid­ered an ex­ec­u­tive or­der or a reg­u­la­tion but merely “sig­nif­i­cant guid­ance,” which ef­fec­tively no­ti­fies schools about how the fed­eral gov­ern­ment in­ter­prets ex­ist­ing laws — in this case, Ti­tle IX, a com­pre­hen­sive fed­eral law that pro­hibits dis­crim­i­na­tion on the ba­sis of sex in any fed­er­ally funded ed­u­ca­tion or ac­tiv­ity.

But while the let­ter does not have the force of law, it

CE­CIL WHIG PHOTO BY JES­SICA IAN­NETTA

The BoBots team of Chris Bain­bridge, Katie Ko­erner, Sean Roelofs and Nathan Daciuk won the 2016 FIRST Tech Chal­lenge World Robotics Cham­pi­onship.

CE­CIL WHIG PHOTO BY JES­SICA IAN­NETTA

Al­though Ce­cil County Public Schools has yet to take a stance on new guide­lines re­gard­ing bath­room use by trans­gen­der stu­dents, Ce­cil Col­lege cre­ated six gen­der neu­tral bath­rooms ear­lier this month.

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