This article was originally published in the Telegraph-Journal.
By David Zitner, October 23, 2023
The debate over schools notifying parents when students alter their gender identity has ignited heated discussions, particularly after Saskatchewan and New Brunswick introduced policies requiring parental involvement whenever a minor desire to change their percieved gender.
One of the loudest voices is the LGBT advocacy organization Egale. It has called for an alternative approach, but one that risks serious unintended consequences for gender-questioning children. Egale’s proposed method will foster deception at home and unintentionally alienate many children within their own families, contributing to anxiety, depressions, suicidal thoughts, shame and isolation.
Well-intentioned school boards, backed directly and indirectly by regulatory bodies and certain provincial governments, are adopting approaches that could keep parents in the dark. In Ontario, a policy adopted by the Greater Essex County District School Board explicitly states a students gender identity, chosen name, and pronouns should never be disclosed to parents or guardians without the students explicit consent, regardless of the student’s age.