Colts Neck School District votes to table decision on transgender student policy

Policy 5756 called for a "prompt" process to begin to inform a parent when a student asks the school to be addressed by a different name or pronoun or identifies as a different gender.

Matt Trapani and Eliecer Marte

Jun 28, 2023, 12:22 PM

Updated 352 days ago

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The Colts Neck School District has voted to table a decision about a proposed policy on how teachers can notify parents if a student comes out as transgender.
School districts in Middletown, Marlboro and Manalapan have passed similar guidelines and are now being sued by New Jersey Attorney General Matt Platkin, who says the policies go against state regulations.
Policy 5756 called for a "prompt" process to begin to inform a parent when a student asks the school to be addressed by a different name or pronoun or identifies as a different gender.
It was a packed meeting in Colts Neck - full of emotion from both sides of the issue.
“Keeping that information from the parents to me is, just as a father, is absolutely immoral,” said one father.
The heated conversation also resulted in police intervention.
“I’ve been down this road so I can tell you from experience. Coming out is not a linear process. For some kids, it takes a decade. For some kids, it takes a couple of years. And sometimes they need to test the waters,” says Denise Troy.
School professionals would not be required to notify parents in the "reasonable belief" that disclosure would pose a threat of harm to a student.
“Children should be able to trust their teachers and be able to be who they are without worrying about people telling their parents. It should be on their own terms,” says Frankie Stella.
Those opposed to the policy had signs with such saying as, “Forced outing creates trauma.” Many have expressed that the policy could lead to an increased amount of youth that end up homeless because they are rejected at home.
“Understand what it meant to change my identity is what helped me come out to my family and I don’t think that it would have gone as smoothly at home if it hadn’t gone smoothly at school first,” says Perri Polyvioel.
But those who support the policy say that students should go to school to learn reading, writing and arithmetic and not to “come out or explore their gender Identity.”
“For Matt Platkin to tell school boards to keep parents in the dark, to lie to parents and to view parents as a problem, is grossly irresponsible and a serious violation of parental right,” one father stated.
It was not clear what would become of Colts Neck’s proposal or if it will be voted on at a later date.


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