NEW YORK — A Dallas school board member said Wednesday she will not vote to allow students to fight over school dress codes, saying she does not believe students should have the right to “be the butt of jokes” for their choice to dress differently.
The Dallas Independent School District board voted Wednesday to take up the issue of transgender students in schools and make the district the first in the country to require students to wear gender neutral uniforms.
After a meeting Tuesday, board members voted to take the issue to the full board, which will vote on whether to adopt the resolution Thursday.
“I feel like if you have the ability to make that choice, you should be able to make it,” board member Sharon Anderson said.
“We are not asking our children to be the butt (of jokes).”
The school is not a ‘gendered locker room’ and we want our students to be able and comfortable with their body, with their gender identity, their gender expression,” she said.
Board members also agreed to consider an amendment that would require students who identify as transgender to use bathrooms that match their gender, including girls and women’s bathrooms, locker rooms and bathrooms with cross-dressing toilets.
Students at one school district in Texas are currently fighting to have their gender pronouns removed from their birth certificate and are suing the state.
Diana Bunch, a transgender high school student, said the board is acting out of a lack of concern for students’ safety and well-being.
It’s a real shame, because I have been fighting to get my pronouns changed in the past,” Bunch said.
She added that she believes she would have been better off to be transgender and stay at home.
When she first entered high school, Bunch was confused about her gender identity.
But she said she started using the boys’ bathroom at school when she was about 10.
She said it’s important for transgender students to understand that their choices are important to others.
“I believe that our students need to be educated and that they should not be discriminated against because of who they are or what they look like,” Bunt said.