Palo Alto Unified School District (PAUSD) is committed to creating a safe and welcoming learning environment for every student. To accomplish this goal, the District is engaged in efforts to create comprehensive policies, practices and initiatives to support students who identify as Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Questioning and others (LGBTQ+).
During the 2015-16 school year, PAUSD adopted a Gender Equity and Access Board Policy and Administrative Regulation (BP/AR 5157), to describe the rights of LGBTQ+ youth and the responsibilities of those that serve them. Much of this work was led by the District LGBTQ+ Council, a group of parents, teachers, administrators, students and others dedicated to fostering inclusive communities to ensure the success and well-being of students regardless of gender identity or sexual orientation.
To support BP/AR 5157, the District has developed signage for all-gender bathrooms for all secondary schools and is in the process of addressing the matter of signage at the elementary level.
Additionally, the district has two forms to change Name/Gender Marker of Minor. Request for Name Gender Marker of Minor should be completed when a parent(s) or legal guardian(s) wishes the child to be known by a name different from the name on the birth verification, but whom there has been no legal change of name.
The Legal Change of Name/Gender Marker of Minor should be completed when custodial parent(s) or legal guardian(s) have orders or approval for a legal name/gender marker change by a judgment of a California court of competent jurisdiction, and a copy of the order or judgment is provided.
The Request for Name and/or Gender Marker change form should be completed when custodial parent(s) or legal guardian(s) wishes the child to be known by a name or gender marker different from that on the birth verification, but for whom there has been no legal change of name/gender marker.
PAUSD has also engaged in significant efforts to promote awareness and capacity of administrators and staff. Partnerships with Outlet and Gender Spectrum have been successful in supporting teacher training. For example, all new teachers are trained by Outlet on LGBTQ+ related matters.
Additionally, 25 school staff have been trained on gender diversity by Gender Spectrum through a trainer or trainer model. These staff have since provided training to over 250 staff to promote understanding and knowledge of issues related to gender inclusivity. Both high schools also have a Gay Straight Alliance to support student voice and action.
PAUSD has also developed an elementary LibGuide to support LGBTQQ related matters. The LibGuide is one of kind at the elementary level and a credit to our teacher librarians.
Finally, our Music and Art Coordinators have an ongoing partnership with TheatreWorks to create educational productions. Last year they collaborated to create, Oskar and the Countless Costume Changes, a K-5 production that addressed issues of gender inclusivity.
PAUSD is dedicated to promoting inclusion, safety and wellness for every students. Below are additional resources and tools for students, teacher and families to address LGBTQ+ topics.
For more information please contact the student Wellness and Support Services at 650-833-4208.