welcoming schoolsPost submitted by Bo Suh, HRC Digital Media Intern

Last week, the Vancouver School Board approved a policy that allows students to play on sports teams that match their gender identities and welcomes gender-neutral pronouns. The moves will provide safer and more-inclusive environments for students with a range of gender identities and expressions. 

According to HRC's Foundation 2012 survey of 10,000 LGBT youth in the United States, nearly 10 percent of respondents fall into the “gender-expansive” grouping – respondents who identified as transgender or chose “other” and wrote in their own terms. The report underscores the need for moves like those taken by Vancouver's School Board. Of the 925 gender-expansive respondents, one-third identified as transgender and two-thirds wrote in their own terms, such as queer, gender-queer, gender fluid and non-binary.

While the Vancouver policy sparked some debate, a wide range of parents, school officials, medical authorities and board members called the policy important and necessary.

"We’re standing up for kids and making our schools safer and more inclusive,” board member Mike Lombardi told the Vancouver Sun.

HRC applauds the Vancouver School Board for making strides in creating safe and inclusive environments for transgender students. 

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