GLEN ROCK, NJ – The Glen Rock Board of Education will introduce a new policy called “Gender Identity and Expression” for first reading during their next board meeting on Tuesday, September 10.
“One of the things we did in the past, we just kind of slipped in gender identity in a lot of the cases in our policies, but of course, the state passed a new law and said that we have to include it in the curriculum,” explained Trustee Rona McNabola, the policy liaison, during the board’s August 27 meeting. “So now we need an actual, physical gender identity policy.”
The board, which is viewing revisions to the policy, a document McNabola remarked as “fairly well done,” is also collaborating on it with Grace Mauceri, a Glen Rock High School parent. While more details will be divulged at the board’s forthcoming meeting, the policy “sets guidelines for protecting transgender and gender non-conforming students in school and unique situations presented for these students,” according to district spokeswoman Angela Crawford.
This past month, the Glen Rock School District joined 70 other school districts that are members of the Diversity Council on Global Education and Citizenship. According to a news release, the council “empowers educators to create safe, inclusive learning environments by providing Common Core-aligned professional development. It also fosters the continued growth of active and compassionate individuals to reduce intolerance, harassment/intimidation and to promote social justice.”
This past spring, school officials uncovered two swastika signs drawn on classroom and bathroom walls at Glen Rock High School.
"This past June, schools officials found symbols of intolerance and hate," Superintendent Brett Charleston said in the release. "The Board of Education met with Glen Rock's community and religious leaders to discuss additional steps to ensure that our schools remain a safe space for all."
An adoption of the Gender Identity and Expression Policy is planned for Tuesday, September 24 and is slated for activation on October 1, Superintendent Brett Charleston said.