School Reaffirms Commitment to Transgender Students
As an independent school, Crossroads is not impacted by last week’s decision by the Trump administration regarding transgender students. The Departments of Justice and Education have withdrawn federal guidelines requiring public schools to provide students access to sex-segregated facilities based on their gender identity.
Yet the decision provides a sobering reminder that Crossroads School must remain vigilant in its support of all students, regardless of their gender identity or expression.
“I am heartbroken that there are students across the country who will be compelled to use locker rooms, restrooms and other facilities that are at odds with their gender identity,” says Head of School Bob Riddle. “Here at Crossroads, we remain committed to providing a safe, loving and LGBTQ-affirming environment that respects the dignity and self-determined gender identity of every student.”
To that end, the School recently formalized its policies of inclusion regarding students who identify as transgender or gender-nonconforming. At the beginning of the 2016-17 school year, all full-time employees engaged in professional development led by Joel Baum of Gender Spectrum, a leading national voice on these issues. There are gender-neutral bathrooms on both the Norton and 21st Street campuses, including 14 stalls in the Science Education & Research Facility.
“Crossroads’ unwavering commitment to transgender students is not only a poignant affirmation of our collective values, but it also demonstrates the most powerful weapon we possess: resistance,” asserts Crossroads senior Alec Schulman. “Rescinding federal protections for transgender students in public schools undermines the core values outlined in America’s founding documents, and ultimately what we as a nation claim to stand for.”
Last week, the Crossroads K-12 Parent Council (CPC) held a parent education event to explore topics surrounding gender, an issue that affects the lives and experiences of all children. Crossroads will hold another session on this topic on Monday, March 13.