ETHS Alumni for Trans Student Rights
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We recently learned that the administration at ETHS is delaying action to protect the rights of trans students (for more information, check out the article below). Principal Marcus Campbell cited the recent actions by the U.S. government as a reason for this delay. He is quoted as saying, “There are a lot of kids with varying identities at ETHS who are very scared.” As alumni, we know that ETHS has not always fulfilled the role of protecting and prioritizing students who are from historically oppressed groups. Now more than ever, we need to take concrete action to do so rather than waiting to comply with federal demands. The administration at ETHS has a responsibility to do everything in its power to keep students safe and cared for. By setting this precedent, ETHS is sending a message that some students are more worthy of protection than others, and that it is unwilling to side with students who most need support and protection in our communities. Principal Campbell said it himself, there are students who are very afraid right now. For that reason, we are making our demands known. We demand the following actions to be taken immediately, so as to ensure the protection and care of all ETHS students.
If you can, please attend the upcoming meeting regarding this policy, which will take place Thursday, March 16th at 8am at ETHS in East 112. We hope to see you there.
To the ETHS Administration and school board:
It has come to our attention that the school board and administration of Evanston Township High School has indefinitely suspended any efforts to create a safe and respectful learning environment for trans, gender non-conforming, non-binary, genderqueer, and queer identified students. We, the undersigned ETHS alumni, demand that the following actions be taken immediately on behalf of current and future students:
1.) Enact the policy changes necessary to protect trans students, staff, and faculty in all school spaces, including bathrooms and locker rooms in a way that does not isolate or ostracize them from their peers.
2.) Issue a statement to all ETHS students, staff, faculty, and families outlining these policy changes and affirming the continued support of all trans students, staff, and faculty at ETHS.
3.) Make all policy changes available and accessible to the public.
4.) Work directly with trans organizations, including but not limited to the Illinois Safe School Alliance and the ETHS Gender and Sexuality Alliance (GSA), to ensure that all policies crafted by the ETHS school board and administration will comply with the needs of all trans students, staff, and faculty.
5.) Ensure the ETHS Gender and Sexuality Alliance (GSA) has more than sufficient funding as well as administrative and faculty support to facilitate educational programming on trans issues year round.
6.) Bring in trainers from the Illinois Safe School Alliance, or a similar, reputable organization, for a workshop on trans rights, not only for faculty but also administration and staff so that policy changes that address trans students are not violated or ignored.
ETHS officials have cited the recent actions of the current presidential administration as their reason for postponing these policy changes. We demand that these actions be taken in light of and in direct response to the actions of our government. Now is the time when we stand by all trans people. Silence and inaction in this moment will be viewed as violence against and discrimination toward Evanston Township High School’s trans, gender non-conforming, non-binary, genderqueer, and queer identified students, staff, and faculty. We, the undersigned, will continue our efforts until this situation has been thoroughly and thoughtfully resolved.
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