Parental rights group: 1,000 school districts support hiding kids' gender issue from parents
Nicole Neily explained that these ideas are being pushed by state school board associations and activist groups.
An education group that supports parents' rights released a comprehensive list this month of over 1,000 school districts that support children keeping their gender identity hidden from their parents.
Parents Defending Education published a list last updated on Sept. 11, which showed that there are 1,044 school districts across the U.S. that "openly state that district personnel can or should keep a student’s transgender status hidden from parents."
"We are still getting tips that are pouring in every day," President of Parents Defending Education Nicole Neily said on the Friday edition of the "Just the News, No Noise" TV show. "We actually released this number initially in March, and then we identified about 200 counties....this number keeps growing across the country."
Neily explained that these ideas are being pushed by state school board associations and LGBTQ activist groups.
"These associations are not parents' friends and we're really trying to remind families of that as well," she explained. "So these are policies that are being pushed by activist groups like GLSEN and the Trevor Project that are saying the families are inherently not safe."
GLSEN and the Trevor Project are activist groups that focus on LGBTQ youth and raise awareness of issues they may be facing in schools.
GLSEN's recommended policy for school districts states that at the elementary school level, "If school staff believe that a gender identity or expression issue is presenting itself and creating difficulty for the child at school, approaching parents about the issue is appropriate at the elementary level."
At the same time, GLSEN is lobbying for school districts to adopt the policy that regarding children in secondary school, "Generally, notification of a student’s parent about his or her gender identity, expression or transition is unnecessary, as they are already aware and may be supportive. In some cases, however, notifying parents carries risks for the student, such as being kicked out of the home."
According to a poll published earlier this year by Parents Defending Education, three out of four voters in the U.S. said they support requiring schools to have parental consent before assisting in a student's gender-identity change.
The poll, conducted from March 15-20 by CRC Research on behalf of Parents Defending Education, with 1,600 registered voters, has a 2.45% margin of error.
Republicans (86%) are more likely than Democrats (69%) to support requiring teachers or staff to inform parents if their child wants to use a different name or pronouns while at school. Black voters are also more likely to support this policy at 78%, compared to 77% of white voters, the poll shows.
Neily explained that parents' rights should not be a partisan issue but rather something on which everyone should come together.
"It's not a partisan issue," she stated. "Children do better when families are involved in their lives. You can supplement their education. You can ask questions. You know your child, but we're being held at arm's length. We're being told [by certain teachers unions] 'We're with your kids eight hours a day, so we know them better than you do.'"