In Northern Virginia, Fairfax County Public Schools (FCPS) have announced they will defy new guidance on transgender bathrooms and pronouns set forth by Gov. Glenn Youngkin. FCPS Superintendent Michelle Reid says that the district’s policies align with both state and federal anti-discrimination laws after thorough legal review.
Reid’s statement went on further:
“We have concluded our detailed legal review and determined that our current Fairfax County Public School (FCPS) policies are consistent with federal and state anti-discrimination laws as required by the new model policies,”
“Let me be clear that FCPS remains committed to fostering a safe, supportive, welcoming, and inclusive school environment for all students and staff, including our transgender and gender-expansive students and staff,”
In 2022, the Virginia Department of Education revised its 2021 Model Policies concerning the treatment of transgender students in the state’s public schools. The department criticized the previous administration’s guidelines, suggesting they disregarded parental rights and leaned toward promoting a specific cultural viewpoint.
The updated policies mandate school activities be separated by biological sex, with students required to participate and use facilities based on their sex assigned at birth. The guidelines emphasize parents’ rights in decision-making regarding their children, referencing the 14th Amendment, which acknowledges parents’ fundamental rights in their children’s upbringing and education.
Despite these directives, FCPS is showing resistance. Their statement stressed that students will continue to be addressed by their chosen names and pronouns, and have access to facilities in line with their gender identity. They emphasized these decisions are supported by FCPS regulations and federal law.