In Sacramento, Trans Justice Hits the Senate
California education officials took the first step this week toward complying with a law that requires public schools to include prominent gay people and gay rights' milestones in the curriculum, adopting a set of classroom material guidelines that prohibit "pejorative descriptions" based on sexual orientation and gender identity.
Not so long ago, Toni Bias dreamed of playing in the W.N.B.A. But after starring on the girls’ junior varsity basketball team as a high school freshman, Toni came out as transgender last summer, began going by the name Tony and started transitioning to male.
The promise of “opportunity” is embedded in the Declaration of Independence: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” But the opportunity to enjoy life freely, to pursue happiness, to better one’s self and one’s circumstances is not self-evident to people for whom certain forms of discrimination are an unassailable tradition.
April 29, 2013, Sacramento – Dozens of high school students are in the state capitol today advocating for two bills to help ensure all youth—including lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) youth—have the opportunity to stay in school and succeed. The youth are gathered for the 8th annual Queer Youth Advocacy Day, which unites LGBT and straight ally youth activists from Gay-Straight Alliance (GSA) clubs across state.
It has been one year since I raised my hand in a U.S. history class during a lecture on gay rights, and came out as gay to 40 of my peers and my favorite teacher.
The School Success and Opportunity Act (AB 1266), authored by Assemblymember Tom Ammiano, has passed the Assembly Education Committee by a vote of 5-2.
The bill, which is co-sponsored by Equality California, Transgender Law Center, GSA Network, Gender Spectrum, and the National Center for Lesbian Rights, addresses the exclusion of transgender students from classes and activities, and clarifies existing anti-discrimination law to provide clear protections to transgender students.
California public schools would be required to allow transgender students to use school facilities and participate in activities and on sports teams that match their gender identity under a bill introduced at the Capitol.
The Chambersburg Area School District board has until 5 p.m. Wednesday to reverse its denial of a Gay-Straight Alliance student club or go to court with the American Civil Liberties Union.
Witold Walczak, legal director of the Pennsylvania ACLU, said three previous cases in Pennsylvania -- in Waynesboro, Franklin County, and Hermitage, Mercer County in 2009, and a third in Brownsville, Fayette County in 2012 -- stand as examples of what the school board should do.