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Transgender guidelines being implemented by local school board

TRURO – The Chignecto-Central Regional School Board is creating guidelines for transgender and non-conforming staff and students.

“It’s not important if they are transgender; what’s important is that they know they are safe, respected and protected,” Debbie Buott-Matheson, CCRSB’s communications spokeswoman, told the Truro Daily News.

Buott-Matheson said the discussion stems back to a situation in the recent past in which a transgender student “very much wanted to use the female washroom.” The school board realized the topic needed to be discussed and changes made.

“The board recognized there’s a gap right now … we need to provide support and be well equipped,” Buott-Matheson said.

A draft guideline report was discussed at this week’s board committee meeting in Truro and Allison McGrath, director of human resources services, said she is aware of one casual gender employee.

Some guideline changes have been implemented, such as encouraging the use of proper pronouns in everyday language and providing educational videos and web links.

Buott-Matheson confirmed a few gender-neutral washrooms have been added “in some (school) sites” and more may be installed in the future based on more discussion.

The board is waiting for a final report on provincial transgender guidelines. No specific timeline has been given for the report.

“I feel it’s time to get it out to the schools in the next couple of months,” suggested McGrath.

Twitter: tdnMonique

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