Pittsburgh Schools Let Boys in Girls’ Locker Rooms

News: Education
by Bradley Eli, M.Div., Ma.Th.  •  ChurchMilitant.com  •  June 24, 2016   

School board votes to let students of both biological sexes share bathrooms amidst parental outcry

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PITTSBURGH (ChurchMilitant.com) - Boys and girls may now use the same bathrooms and locker rooms in the Pittsburgh Public School District (PPSD).

All nine members of the PPSD board voted Wednesday night to approve the policy amidst public outcry. Cynthia Falls, one of the board members, relates that people who opposed the policy weren't given enough time to express their concerns.

Falls told reporters after the vote, "I know there were public hearings and forums and stuff, but I don't believe the forums were equal. ... I think we need to do due diligence to people who have different viewpoints."

Cletus Marie Abates, one of the parents, expressed similar concerns. "I'm disappointed that the board didn't take the request that we felt that we needed more discussion," she said. "The policy needed revision and clarification."

Vanessa Davis, a known promoter in schools of the LGBT agenda, helped draft the transgender policy for the school district. Davis said the policy "really protects all students."

But Abates disagrees."I feel that the school district has to work in the best interest of all students in the district and not have a selective agenda."

A spokesperson for the diocese issued a press release following the meeting which claims the new policy addresses "privacy and confidentiality, names and pronouns." The confidentiality feature of this policy has some parents worried.

The policy allows schools to keep a student's transgender identity hidden from his parents. In effect, if a student comes out as transgender, the school does not have to tell the parents without the student's expressed permission.

The press release also mentions "students' protections under Title IX." Title IX is the section of the Education Amendments of 1972 that prohibits discrimination on the basis of biological sex.

Board member Cynthia Davis said the reason she voted for the transgender policy was "because it was a federal regulation." She's referring to the expanded use of the term "sex" occurring under the Obama administration, which changed "sex" from its traditional meaning by the courts, namely, "biological sex" at birth, to so-called "gender identity" that can be chosen at will.

Earlier this year federal judge Paul Niemeyer, discontented over such an expansive interpretation of the word "sex" in Title IX legislation, expressed his frustration in a dissenting opinion:

[A]lthough Title IX and its regulations provide generally that a school receiving federal funds may not discriminate on the basis of sex, they also specify that a school does not violate the Act by providing, on the basis of sex, separate living facilities, restrooms, locker rooms, and shower facilities.


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