by Jane Coleman at legalinsurrection.com
Public schools are encouraging students to socially transition behind their parents’ backs, claiming secrecy is necessary to keep kids “safe”—from their parents.
Stephen Foote and Marissa Silvestri’s 11-year-old daughter was a sixth-grade student at the Baird Middle School in Ludlow, MA, during the 2020-2021 school year when her parents say they learned she identified as “genderqueer.”
It was news to the parents, but not to the school.
The Ludlow school staff played an active role in socially transitioning students to other genders, the parents allege. [Complaint par. 58] The chief instigator was the former school librarian: She advertised her own “nonbinary” status to the school community and told students not to refer to one another as “boys” and “girls.” She also met one-on-one with both their son and daughter, the parents say in the complaint, “on multiple occasions to discuss alternative genders, affirm the children’s choices of alternative names, and provide encouragement for their assertion of a transgender identity”—all without their knowledge or consent. [Complaint, par. 90]
In fact, the parents might never have found out about their daughter if it weren’t for one brave teacher who they claim forwarded them the email she sent to school staff [Complaint, par. 60]:
Hello everyone, If you are reading this you are either my teacher or guidance counselor. I have an announcement to make and I trust you guys with this information. I am genderqueer. Basically, it means I use any pronouns (other than it/its). This also means I have a name change. My new name will be R****. Please call me by that name. If you deadname me or use any pronouns I am not comfortable with I will politely tell you. I am telling you this because I feel like I can trust you. A list of pronouns you can use are: she/her he/him they/them fae/faerae/aer ve/ver xe/xem ze/zir. I have added a link so you can look at how to say them. Please only use the ones I have listed and not the other ones. I do not like them. Thank you. R*** Foote. [Complaint, par. 56]
The teacher was later fired, the parents allege, for her “inappropriate contact with the parents,” i.e., for sharing the student’s email with her own parents. [Complaint, par. 71]
That is because under the alleged Ludlow public school policy, when a student asks to be called by a new name and pronouns of another gender, staff members have to keep it a secret from the parents, unless they have the student’s consent.read more