Having read the newly proposed Policy 2116 on “Privacy in Locker Rooms and Restrooms” (available on Board Docs here), we are impressed with how well-thought-out and comprehensive it is.  It restores sanity and safety – and removes uncertainty – for students, staff, and parents on the use of locker rooms and restrooms.  And it does it in a way that doesn’t conflict with how a person’s sex is defined in Missouri State Statute (RS 193.215).

Policy 2116 ensures that the preferences of transgender students are respected if they do not wish to use the bathroom of their biological sex recorded on their birth certificate.  It mandates that they be provided a single-use restroom in every school.  It also makes plain that no transgender student will be discriminated against, harassed, or retaliated against by any student or staff for their choice to use a single-use restroom.

Policy 2116 also defends the privacy and safety of everyone else who abides by the biological sex on their birth certificate.  It mandates that only toilets and urinals can be used to dispose of human waste (e.g. no cat litter-boxes for staff to clean up. Update: litter boxes aren’t mentioned in the policy; it isn’t currently happening anywhere, nor should it in the future).  It also prohibits the use of any device to take photos or videos in locker rooms or restrooms of students who are nude or partially nude.

These are all common-sense guidelines that should be acceptable to everyone.  Furthermore, the Board is giving the public ample time to provide their input by posting this first reading for the October 26th meeting before voting on it in November.  This is the kind of transparency district patrons have wanted!

Now, here is what Policy 2116 does NOT do:

  • Prevent transgender students from relieving themselves in a nearby bathroom (they have two choices);
  • Prevent transgender students from dressing the way they want or being called by whatever name they choose;
  • Prevent transgender students from belonging to any clubs, including the Gay Straight Alliance (GSA) chapters that are available at ALL high schools;
  • Prevent transgender students from reading books about other transgender kids;
  • Prevent transgender students from competing for scholarships, taking advanced placement courses, or dual enrolling; or
  • Prevent transgender students from getting a great education to prepare them for their next stage of adulthood – while doing it on taxpayer dollars in the Francis Howell School District.

ALL students can be their authentic selves without being intimidated, embarrassed, or confused about the simple act of using a bathroom or locker room.  What a breath of fresh air to have a Board that puts an end to the bathroom confusion and anxiety that we all have experienced these last few years!

You can link to Board Docs here to read Policy 2116.    Francis Howell Families appreciates your support in giving parents a voice in electing Board Members and setting policy in your schools.

Here’s what you can do: