With the trans pride flag painted on his cheek, Caleb Richards stares into the lens.
In light of the federal government threatening to change the definition of gender, there was a lot of concern on how this would affect Title IX* and our school district, and the freedom for students to express their gender identity. GSA club took action to help ensure the protection of students in our community, who do not assign with the gender they were assigned at birth, by writing a letter to our school’s admin and the school district. The letter to admin asked what they would do if such federal laws pass, and what’s it going to do to Title IX and what’s going to do to our student body and our local government. “We have a lot of gender non-conforming students in our student body and a lot of people that are not the assigned gender they were at birth, so we wanted to make sure those students were safe,” Susie Walters, 11 said. “We want to make sure that we have an inclusive environment for people where they are able to express themselves the way that they want to be expressed, and their gender is respected in our school walls. We got a few replies and they were a couple from the school board and they were very supportive and amazing, they were like ‘don’t worry, we are totally on your side, we respect GSA, we respect everyone’s gender identity.’”
*Title IX of the Education Amendments Act of 1972 is a federal law that states: “No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.”