A middle school in Texas instructed its teachers to not reveal any “transgender” or “non-binary” students’ identities to their own parents, drawing significant backlash from parents in the district.
According to the Daily Caller, the controversy originated at Walsh Middle School (WMS), which is part of the Round Rock Independent School District (RRISD). The instructions were given as part of a teacher training seminar, which included a PowerPoint presentation outlining these orders.
The most controversial slide, titled “What NOT to Do” regarding a student’s alleged “transgender” identity, is the sentence “DO NOT contact their parents and out them to their families.” The slide continues by claiming that “it is potentially dangerous and could be long-term damaging for the student.” Other slides in the presentation include “What if I make a mistake and misgender someone,” as well as “pronoun tips.”
One slide bizarrely claims that “strangers,” including school counselors, can be “dangerous,” and even fatal, for “transgender” students.
“They can ruin your entire life, get you kicked out of your home by your parents, or make other teachers treat you awfully and make your school experience miserable,” the slide in question reads. “They can even get you killed by outing you without your permission, which they are usually expected to do.”
The presentation was leaked by an anonymous RRISD teacher who did not approve of the demands for secrecy from the district’s leadership, especially concerning the relationship between the students and their own parents.
“The first time I was asked by a student to refer to themselves by a different gender, a different name, and different pronouns,” the teacher recounted, “I went to my principal and counselor for help. I have never received an email like that. I asked if I could contact the parents first to make sure that they were aware of this because I would want to know as a parent. They told me no, that the child could get beat and maybe not be accepted by their family. I was to accept and comply.”
“I cried in my classroom,” the teacher added. “I cried all the way home. That was two years ago.”
News of the presentation sparked outrage among parents in the district. Christie Slape, herself a former teacher with four children in the district, said that “parents know their child best and have the right to know about a decision this consequential.”
“I understand that teachers are put in a difficult position,” Slape continued. “If they are asked to refer to a student as an identity other than documented in school records, the teacher has the moral obligation and responsibility to communicate with the parents. It is troubling to think that teachers are being told to be secretive and circumvent a parent’s input on this weighty issue.”
Another parent, Eric Norbut, said that he was “very concerned about an emerging mantra that teachers know better than parents when it comes to educating their kids.” A mother in the district, Kieu Trang, said that this incident and other instances of left-wing totalitarianism in recent years remind her of Vietnam, the country from which she fled.
“It is unacceptable that teachers have been trained to ‘not contact parents’ when parents should be the first people contacted,” said Trang. “Are they teaching children that it is OK to hide from parents? Are they intentionally grooming and prepping my children to be something that they might not want to be in the first place? What else are they hiding?”