As of Tuesday, January 13, 2015
OMAK Boys will be boys and girls will be girls. But the Omak School District is close to approving a policy that will blur those lines.
In order to comply with new state laws, the district this week is taking up a policy to protect transgender students. State law requires all districts to have such a policy, so Omak isn’t alone.
While protecting such students sounds all well and good, there are components of the policy parents and students alike should know.
Under the proposal, students will be able to choose there restroom, locker room and sports based on how they gender identify.
What does that mean?
It means boys who say they gender identify as girls — but do not have the physical characteristics — will be able to use girls restrooms and locker rooms. They’ll be able to play girls sports and otherwise be referred to by teachers and staff as girls.
Similarly, girls who say they feel like they are a boys — but do not have the physical traits — will be allowed in boys restrooms, locker rooms and sports. Teachers will likewise refer to them in a masculine fashion.
The policy also requires the school district to keep quiet on which students have gender identity issues.
While we agree all students should be protected from discrimination, the new policy goes too far.
In short, we believe boys are boys and girls are girls. Students can, and do, change their behavior, style of dress and attitudes. But they cannot change their DNA.
The physical attributes of boys and girls are decidedly different. The state and our schools need to acknowledge that.
Rather than kowtow to a vocal minority who would have us throw away the reality of biology in favor of gender identity, our youth should be encouraged to embrace their gender. Boys should be proud to be boys. Girls should be proud to be girls.
Blurring the lines between boys and girls may help curb some harassment. But it may also give rise to other forms of harassment.
Our state and schools should take a step back from emotional policies and instead focus on the basics of education.
Let’s leave gender identity issues at home, where parents and students can resolve them in a manner the family best sees appropriate.