Cincinnati schools told to ‘consider’ reporting child abuse if parents unsupportive of child’s gender identity
Cincinnati public schools were advised to “consider reporting” child abuse to the child protective services in cases where a student’s parents do not support his or her gender.
According to a memo from the Cincinnati Board of Education Policy and Equity Committee, a student’s gender identity is confidential and should not be disclosed to parents. This could place the student in danger at home.
The memo says that “a student’s gender identity, birth sex, and legal name all constitute confidential records.” The memo states that schools should give special consideration to disclosing gender identity of students to their parents.
The memo was published as part of the Board of Education meeting minutes. It tells schools that they should consider reporting child abuse in Hamilton County Job and Family Services, if a child’s gender identity places them at risk.
It states that parents may or may be indifferent to the gender identity of their child. This information should not have been shared with parents, if doing so could place the student in danger at home. The administrator must also determine if there is an obligation to report abuse of children to 241-KIDS.
The equity committee stated that the Cincinnati Public Schools General Counsel Daniel Hoying had sent the memo to the district’s principals at the beginning of the school year.
“Mr. Hoying has presented this memo to the Committee, and has also provided it to principals as it describes District policy on accommodating transgender children,” the document states.
The committee stated that the recommendations made in the memo “were based, in part, upon best practices suggested by organizations such as the Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network (GLSEN), National Center for Transgender Equality, American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), Gender Spectrum, Human Rights Campaign Foundation, National Center for Lesbian Rights, and National Educational Association.”
Nicki Neily is the founder and president of Parent Defending Education. She called the policy of the district “unconscionable.”
She told Fox News Digital that it was unconscionable for a school system to throw families in the wood chipper bureaucracy of child protective services based on a mere speculation about whether parents were’supportive of’ a child’s gender identity. This not only puts a strain on an already overburdened system of child welfare, but it also forces loving families to go through a nightmare process in which they must ‘prove that they love’ their children.
Erika Sanzi is the director of outreach for the group. She said, “This is a betrayal.” “To treat a parent as dangerous for protecting their child against gender ideology and to call child protective services, is an abuse of power.”
Fox News Digital requested that CPS clarify its position regarding reporting child abuse in relation to gender identity. The school district received questions about whether or not the policy from 2021 had been revised, if a lack of parental support for the transgender identity of a student due to religious beliefs constituted child abuse, and if a lack of parental support for the transgender identity of a young person ever led to a report of child abuse by the district.
The school district has told Fox News Digital that despite the memo being sent to principals it is not an “official district policy.”
The school district stated that all employees of the school are “mandatory child abuse reporters” and that there is “significant evidence that LGBTQ+ people are at an increased risk for experiencing domestic violent.”
The school district stated that the link provided below was a meeting minute from the CPS Policy and Equity Committee and not an official district policy, procedure, or statement. The CPS Nondiscrimination and Access to Equal Educational Opportunity Board Policy (22260) states that the Board of Education will not discriminate based on religion, race or color, nationality, sex or sexual orientation, gender or gender expression, age, disability, or age.
The school district went on to say that “there is no Board policy regarding reporting to parents a student’s gender identity or expression.” According to the minutes of the meeting, employees in the school district should be cautious if disclosing information about a student could place them at risk at home. According to Ohio Revised Code 2151.421, all school employees must report child abuse. If a school employee becomes aware of violence occurring at home, they are legally required to inform Child Protective Services.