SALEM, Oregon (LifeSiteNews) – The Oregon Department of Education is instructing teachers in the Beaver State to withhold knowledge that a student is suffering gender dysphoria from parents as part of an updated guidance on “supporting gender expansive students.”
The document, dated January 5, purports to be part of the department’s effort to model “statewide support for gender expansive students” to “make school a place where all students and all educators can thrive and support each other every day,” according to an introduction by department director and deputy superintendent Colt Gill.
While the guidance claims that “[p]arent and family support is the goal when supporting gender expansive students,” it “may not be possible in all situations,” such as when a student chooses not to go public with his or her “authentic gender identity.” In that case, “[t]o the extent possible, schools should refrain from revealing information about a student’s gender identity, even to parents, caregivers, or other school administrators, without permission from the student.”
“When a student requests that their gender identity be kept private, the paramount concern should be the health and safety of the student, while also making sure that the student’s gender identity is affirmed in a manner that maintains privacy and confidentiality,” the document says. “If a student wishes their gender identity to remain confidential, the school should discuss with the student the extent to which they are able to offer supportive and affirming options, and whether specific supportive options might compromise the confidentiality the student has requested.”
Asked for comment by Fox News, a department spokesperson claimed that “parent support and involvement is a priority for ODE and we believe it should be for school districts, because when gender expansive students are supported at home, research shows they are more likely to succeed at school and have lower rates of suicide ideation. However, when students identify that notifying their family may be a safety concern, we do encourage schools to prioritize the student’s safety within all school environments.”
This rationale is not sitting well with parents’ rights advocates, the Daily Caller reported.
“Oregon is demonstrating for parents that, once again, academics and education are not the priority of our government school system,” said Laura Zorc, executive director of the group Building Education for Students Together. “There are so few hours in a day, yet Oregon is committed to pushing and retraining teachers on gender issues rather than educating our children.”
“The department of education should be focused on preparing students for their futures outside of the school walls, prepping them for college, graduation, teaching them how to read proficiently, etc,” added Michelle Walker, Oregon chapter president for the group No Left Turn In Education. “Parents across Oregon feel as though the department of education has lost sight of its purpose which explains much of the exodus we have been seeing from our schools. There are far better ways to make sure our LGTBQIA+ students feel included and supported without taking away from the others who aren’t part of that community or don’t identify the same.”
Studies indicate that more than 80% of children experiencing gender dysphoria outgrow it on their own by late adolescence, and that even full “reassignment” surgery often fails to resolve gender-confused individuals’ heightened tendency to engage in self-harm and suicide, and may even exacerbate it by reinforcing their confusion and neglecting the actual root causes of their mental strife.
On top of those issues, experts outside the medical establishment further warn that surgically or chemically reinforcing gender confusion imposes irreversible harm on children such as infertility, impairment of adult sexual function, and reduced life expectancy, as well as the psychological toll of being “locked into” physical alterations regardless of whether they change their minds when they mature, as attested to by many individuals who “detransitioned” back to their true sex.
The risks of Oregon’s latest guidance are grimly illustrated in the story of Yaeli Martinez, a 19-year-old to whom “gender transitioning” was touted as a possible cure for her depression in high school, supported by a high school counselor who withheld what she was going through from her mother. The troubled girl killed herself after trying to live as a man for three years.