South Side School District in Beaver County Threaten Welfare and Safety of Trans Students With New Policies

In 2022, information surfaced from South Side School District in Beaver County, Pennsylvania that they were considering trans-affirming policies. This after a teacher refused to comply and was suspended. Parents were outraged so the School Board reinstated the teacher AND stepped away from what they now termed ‘guidelines.’

They would then consult with the Pennsylvania Family Association to redraft the guidelines.

  • The first policy lays out guidance for using students’ preferred names and pronounces. It states when enrolling a child, a parent must indicate the child’s sex for school records. If that changes, the district needs the new identity in writing.
  • The second policy states students must use bathrooms, locker rooms and showers that correspond to their biological sex.
  • The last policy affects sports participation. Under the new policy, boys will be allowed to play on a girls team as long as it’s before puberty and as long as they are not taking a spot away from a girl. A doctor’s note is required.

“The district policies promote an environment of mutual respect by providing consistent standards for record keeping and addressing students. These policies provide reasonable accommodations to benefit all students while still protecting the purpose for which women’s sports and separate multi-user privacy facilities exist.” says the School District.

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So, what the fuck is this? Parents have to confirm name and pronoun changes in writing which requires students to be out and supported by their family to be supported in school. Bathroom policies that given what’s happened to Nex Benedict in Oklahoma do nothing to protect anyone. And sports policies that allow prepubescent boys to play on girls teams as long as a slot is available.


Am I the only one who doesn’t understand how allowing boys before puberty to play on a girls team is actually supporting trans kids. Trans girls who want to play sports are not prepubescent boys. They are girls.

According to the Beaver County Times, the policy allows students and staff to refuse to address a transgender or nonbinary student by their preferred name and/or pronoun if doing so would “violate the conscience” of the speaker, including for religious reasons.

The sports and bathroom bits are horrible. The requirement of parental notification is incredibly dangerous, stripping kids without supportive homes of the remote possibility of finding sanctuary at school. If anything, the requirement that staff report back to parents make it another place of fear and hiding.

You can find the policies at this link.

Yesterday, we reported on an Eastern PA District repealing anti-trans policies. The back and forth across 500 school districts creates a head spin that I fear we’ll be sorting out for decades. But we wrap up this week with one affirming school district and one non-affirming school district in Pennsylvania. I’d say that’s a wash, but the students in South Side School District are probably not comforted.



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