As the school year has begun, the Grapevine Colleyville Independent School District has passed a set of policies on a wide range of topics including pronoun usage, bathrooms, and classroom discussions.
According to NBC 5, the policies would limit how teachers talk about certain topics and give trustees a greater say over which books are made available in schools. The policies passed in a 4-3 vote around midnight after a lengthy discussion and public comments.
One member of the public, Lauren Leeman told NBC 5, that she was not surprised by the outcome but felt it was important to voice her opinion. Leeman said to NBC 5: “It’s basically a big step on telling students, primarily, gay teachers and the LGBTQ community in general, that they are othered. That they don’t matter. That’s what the policies mean."
NBC 5, says with the new policies, GCISD will not require the use of pronouns for students or teachers that don't align with the person's biological sex. Even with permission from a parent requesting a teacher use a certain pronoun, the teacher is not required to use the pronoun requested by the family. The district will also require that every multiple-occupancy bathroom be used only by people based on their biological sex.
The policy according to NBC 5 also says district staff should not talk about sexual orientation or gender identity until the child has finished fifth grade. Many people spoke in favor of the policies. One person said that the purpose of the school system should be to prepare students for the real world, meaning a life outside the bubble of GCISD.
NBC 5 says that Leeman said her group of parents, grandparents, and current GCISD students are working with the ACLU of Texas.