California School District Scraps Parent Notification Policy for Trans Students

The state ordered Murietta Valley Unified to rescind the policy. A dozen SoCal districts have adopted similar rules; one was sued by the attorney general.
California School District Scraps Parent Notification Policy for Trans Students
The Glendale Unified School Board’s final meeting of the school year draws dozens of parents, community members, and activists protesting over the district’s policies on LGBT content in schools in Glendale, Calif., on June 20, 2023. (Hasmik Bezirdzhyan)
Micaela Ricaforte

The Murietta Valley Unified school board announced last week it will no longer enforce its controversial policy requiring parents to be notified if their child wishes to identify as transgender.

District officials announced the reversal of the policy, which it approved in a 3-2 vote last August, in a letter to the school community on April 12.

The policy required schools to notify parents in writing within three days if their child identifies as transgender, is involved in violence, or shares thoughts of suicide.

Last month, the board considered whether to keep the policy as-is or alter its language—and ultimately decided to leave the policy unchanged.

But on April 10, the state Education Department ordered the board to rescind the policy, claiming it violated state education code because it allegedly discriminates against transgender students.

The district can request a reconsideration of the education department’s order within 30 days of the date it was made.

A spokesperson for the Murietta Valley Unified School District was not immediately available for comment, and it’s currently unclear whether the district plans to appeal the order.

The issue comes after nearly a dozen Southern California school boards like Murietta’s—including the Temecula Valley and Chino Valley school districts—passed parent notification policies last summer, drawing criticism from Gov. Gavin Newsom and state Attorney General Rob Bonta.

After Murietta Valley passed its policy, Mr. Bonta denounced it.

“I am deeply disturbed to learn another school district has put at risk the safety and privacy of transgender and gender nonconforming students by adopting a forced outing policy,” Mr. Bonta said in a statement Aug.11. “My office remains committed to ensuring school policies do not target or seek to discriminate against California’s most vulnerable communities.”

Mr. Bonta filed a lawsuit against Chino Valley over the policy in August. In October, a judge granted the state’s preliminary injunction to stop the district from enforcing parts of its policy.

Last month, Chino Valley revised its policy, which now indicates parents should be notified if their child requests to change any information in their official or unofficial record.
Micaela Ricaforte covers education in Southern California for The Epoch Times. In addition to writing, she is passionate about music, books, and coffee.