Virginia's largest school district refuses to honor updated state guidance on sex-segregated bathrooms, pronouns

The previous guidelines were deemed to have "promoted a specific viewpoint aimed at achieving cultural and social transformation in schools."

Virginia's largest school district will not be following the state's updated guidance regarding trans and non-binary identifying students. Fairfax County Public Schools announced Tuesday that students and staff will be expected to abide by its existing policy for the foreseeable future.

The new regulations, which were adopted in September 2022 under Gov. Glenn Youngkin (R), require facilities and activities to be segregated based on biological sex, and do not mandate the use of preferred pronouns, as had previously been the case.

"We have concluded our detailed legal review and determined that our current Fairfax County Public School policies are consistent with federal and state anti-discrimination laws as required by the new model policies," Superintendent Michelle Reid said in a statement.

She went on to say that students "will continue to be addressed by their chosen names and pronouns," "will continue to be provided with access to facilities, activities, and/or trips consistent with their gender identity," and "will continue to have their privacy respected regarding gender expansive or transgender status, legal name, or sex assigned at birth." 

"All students have a right to privacy in FCPS facilities or while participating in FCPS sponsored events," Reid continued. "Any student who has a need or desire for increased privacy, regardless of the underlying reason, shall be provided with reasonable, non-stigmatizing accommodations."

As Fox News reports, state officials opted to change its Model Policies for the Treatment of Transgender Students in Virginia's Public Schools after a review found that the 2021 guidelines "disregarded the rights of parents and ignored other legal and constitutional principles that significantly impact how schools educate students, including transgender students." 

The previous guidelines were also deemed to have "promoted a specific viewpoint aimed at achieving cultural and social transformation in schools."

The FCPS is not the first to refuse to follow the updated regulations. Both Alexandria and Arlington's school districts previously announced that they would continue adhering to past rules.
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