DISTRICT | March 31, 2021
March 31 is International Transgender Day of Visibility: an annual awareness day dedicated both to celebrating the accomplishments of transgender, non-binary and gender nonconforming (TGNC) people and raising awareness of the work that still needs to be done to create safer, more inclusive spaces for them.
Three Things You Can Do Today to be an Ally:
- Educate yourself: Gay, Lesbian, and Straight Education Network (GLSEN) classroom resources and blogs featuring student and educator experiences “can help students and educators learn about gender diversity, pronoun visibility, trans students’ rights, and inclusive curriculum and GSA practices.”
- Use a person’s preferred pronouns: Help normalize pronouns by sharing your own in introduction and asking for others’ pronouns. If you don’t know someone’s pronouns, use gender-neutral pronouns and greetings.
- Find other allies in your community: Join your school’s GSA to discuss ways you can work together to make your school more inclusive.
In addition to the district’s Gender Diversity Toolkit, below you can find resources from GLSEN that we’re using to support and affirm our TGNC community in and outside of classrooms.
Resources for All Allies:
Being an ally starts with accepting and supporting TGNC people, but can also include elevating the TGNC voices in your community and advocating for greater equity. Though GLSEN’s Ally Week is just seven days each year, their resources can help everyone understand how to be an ally every day:
- Gender Terminology: Discussion Guide and Pronouns: A Resource
- Being a Better Ally to LGBTQ Youth, created for GLSEN’s Ally Week
- Harsh Realities: The Experiences of Transgender Youth in our Schools (research report)
Resources for Student and Educator Allies:
Our schools should be places where our youth are encouraged to express their unique experience and create a more inclusive society; to achieve this, we need to work together on local and district levels:
- 4 Toxic Messages I Learned about Gender (and 4 to Teach Instead) (student blog)
- Dear Trans Students, from a Trans Educator (educator blog)
- Making Your Club Inclusive of Transgender and Gender Nonconforming Students
- Model District Policy on Transgender and Gender Nonconforming Students
Sex/gender-based discrimination, harassment, and bullying are prohibited by Title IX and CPS policy. If you’re a TGNC person experiencing discrimination within your school community, contact the Office of Student Protections and Title IX to ensure the misconduct you’re experiencing is addressed and resolved.
As a district, we stand in solidarity with our transgender, non-binary and non-conforming students, staff, and community members. We will continue to create safer and more inclusive spaces—in and outside of schools—that act in solidarity with our TGNC community.