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New school gender identity guidelines will have improved language

Jan 27, 2022, 9:41 AM | Updated: 1:57 pm
school gender identity...
Utah State Board of Education met last night virtually to discuss gender identity guidance for schools. Pictured is a USBE meeting in Salt Lake City on Thursday, Aug. 5, 2021. Photo: Kristin Murphy, Deseret News

SALT LAKE CITY — School districts and charter schools in Utah will soon receive new guidelines for addressing gender identity issues.

Select members of the Utah State Board of Education met via Zoom for over three hours. The meeting was streamed to Youtube.

School gender identity guidance

Wednesday night’s Utah State Board of Education meeting discussed gender identity in schools. One of the main focuses of the conversation was clarifying language on bathroom and locker room use and providing accommodations for students when they request it.

USBE spokesperson Mark Peterson said schools have asked the board for guidance on these issues. Wednesday night’s meeting was an attempt to iron out language that Peterson said will make students feel safe and welcome at schools.

Peterson explained a draft will be available for public comment for thirty or sixty days. The board will revise the guidelines once more after opening the draft to the public. Then, they will submit the final draft to the full board for approval.

Peterson said once a final version of the guidelines is adopted by schools, policies based on those guidelines will be set. These policies would be actually enforceable as opposed to just recommendations. 

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New school gender identity guidelines will have improved language