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Schools Need More Training in Protecting Transgendered Students, Report Says

Schools Need More Training in Protecting Transgendered Students, Report Says

In most schools, bullying- whether it be cyber or in-person—is a big issue when it comes to protecting children and keeping them focused on learning. For transgendered students, a national survey revealed that bullying is more common for them than any other group.

According to a report released last week from the New York Civil Liberties Union, "in many schools, students are harassed, bullied and physically attacked, and officials don't protect them," said Lohud.com.

The NYCLU is using the report to push the state to adopt better policies on protecting transgendered students from bullying and harassment, policies that would benefit districts nationwide.

"...the NYCLU is pushing New York State to do more, particularly to issue guidance for districts on the need to respect preferred names and gender pronouns of students, and to provide access to preferred bathrooms and locker rooms, or private ones if desired. Districts also need to provide training to all school staff, the report says," according to Lohud.com.

The report found that many schools are not in compliance with The Dignity for All Students Act, which was passed in 2010 and requires schools to protect students from discrimination because of gender identity or expression.

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo responded to the report by sending a letter to the Education Department expressing concern over the department's failure to comply with the act and a demand for a plan to address the report, the article said.

The state's Education Department said it has plans to finalize guidance for districts that will be effective at the start of the next school year and "Dennis Tompkins, a spokesman for the department, acknowledged the Dignity for All Students Act alone does not go far enough to help transgender and gender nonconforming students."

States throughout the country are likely to benefit from learning from New York's progress as it works on teacher training and district-wide changes to protect transgendered students.

Read the full story here and comment below.

Article by Nicole Gorman, Education World Contributor

06/30/2015

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