Virginia reverses educational guidelines for transgender students
"The previous policies implemented under the Northam Administration did not uphold constitutional principles and parental rights."
Virginia has announced a near complete reversal of its statewide guidelines for public school accommodations for transgender students and will now require parental consent before the school can affirm a student's gender identity.
The state unveiled the guidelines on Friday, and will hold a 30-day public comment period prior to them taking effect with the consent of the state superintendent, according to the Epoch Times.
Upon the implementation of the new guidelines, public schools will be unable to affirm a student's chosen gender identity, should it differ from their biological sex, without written consent from the students' parents. Students will also be required to use locker and bathrooms that match their biological sex at birth and participate on sports teams that align with it as well.
Former Democratic Gov. Ralph Northam implemented guidelines during his term to the opposite effect. Those policies urged teachers and administrators to avoid disclosing a student's chosen gender identity to their parents should the student feel uncomfortable revealing that information.
"The 2022 model policy posted delivers on the governor's commitment to preserving parental rights and upholding the dignity and respect of all public school students," a spokesperson for Republican Gov. Glenn Youngkin told the Times. "It is not under a school's or the government's purview to impose a set of particular ideological beliefs on all students. Key decisions rest, first and foremost, with the parents."
"The previous policies implemented under the Northam Administration did not uphold constitutional principles and parental rights, and will be replaced," the statement continued.
Education policy played a pivotal in Youngkin's electoral win in the previously deep-blue state. As parents in the state wrestled with public school instruction of Critical Race Theory and transgender ideology, the now-governor promised to restore parental oversight to state education.