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A proposed bill in Texas dictates that teachers are required to "out" their gay, queer and transgendered students at the request of the parent.

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The bill, filed by Texas State Senator Konni Burton, says that parents are entitled to "full and total information on their child’s academic performance, physical, mental and emotional health, and more." Senator Burton recently wrote an Op-Ed for The Texas Tribune entitled "In Fort Worth's transgender battle, parents lose." The piece argues that a parent's input is imperative whether the child wants it or not.

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Fort Worth ISD Superintendent Dr. Kent Scribner recently announced new guidelines for faculty and staff on the handling of its transgender student population. These new guidelines require the recognition of the preferred gender identity of the student, the use of the pronoun he or she prefers, accommodations for the use of bathroom and locker room facilities and participation in the physical education of their preferred gender identity. These guidelines will affect all students, not just transgender students, and to act as if they do not need public and parental input is quite alarming.

The bill, which can be read here, goes so far to say that if a teacher or faculty member withholds information from parents, they can be punished.

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Equality Texas chairman Steve M. Rudner released a statement countering the bill arguing that if your child doesn't trust you enough to come out to them, there is probably a good reason.

As the parent of a gay child, this one is really simple to me.

If your kid is gay, and can tell his teacher, but hasn’t told you, then you are the problem. If a kid can tell a teacher but not their parent, it is a pretty good indication that your child is scared of you and the consequences of telling you, and you are who the kid needs to be protected from.

Until kids are not kicked out of their house for being gay or transgender, and until kids are not being beaten by parents for being gay or transgender, we owe it to kids to protect them.

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Senator Burton's proposed legislation will probably be more damaging to the child/parent relationship in the long run, and if you want your kid to open up to you, hunting down trusted teachers and demanding answers in the name of the law is one weird way to do it.

Just sayin'.
Just sayin'.
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