The Chino Valley Unified School District Board of Education on Thursday heard from both sides of a contentious issue that has sparked debate across the country.
The board voted 4-1 to approve a resolution supporting Assembly Bill 1314, which would require school officials to tell parents within three days of learning that a child is identifying as a gender that doesn’t align with their birth certificate.
The bill has yet to pass a committee and still needs approval from the Legislature and Gov. Gavin Newsom’s signature to become law, but that didn’t stop parents from criticizing the school board for even broaching the topic.
“The school system is broken,” said parent Alexis Charles. “There are so many areas you need to address, yet this is where you chose to put your focus?”
Opponents of the bill say that schools can be a safe space for transgender and non-binary children who may not feel comfortable discussing the issue with their parents.
“You, the school board, will never understand the gravity of the danger this resolution places on transgender students,” said Daniel Moore, valedictorian of this year’s graduating class at Chino High School. “You were supposed to protect students, you were supposed to support students, you were supposed to ensure equality for each student. Proposing this resolution does the complete opposite.”
Supporters, meanwhile, argue that parents have a right to know about their children.
“I had God-given rights as the parent,” said a parent named Misty. “I am the one that birthed my kids, and I will raise them as I am meant to be and have been blessed by God.”
That sentiment echoed an argument made by Assemblymember Bill Essayli (R-Riverside), who sponsored the bill, in a Monday news conference.
“Parents play a critical role in nurturing and supporting children and they cannot be removed from the equation,” he said.