Central Bucks School Board denies allegations of LGBTQ discrimination

Corey Davis Image
Wednesday, October 12, 2022
Bucks Co. school board denies allegations of LGBTQ discrimination
The school board voted Tuesday night to allow further discussion of the policy at the center of all of this.

DOYLESTOWN, Pennsylvania (WPVI) -- Central Bucks School Board members are denying allegations that have been filed in the federal complaint by the ACLU accusing them of discriminating against LGBTQ+ students.

The school board voted Tuesday night to allow further discussion of the policy at the center of all of this.

The policy calls for banning teachers from talking about or displaying décor related to political, sociopolitical, sexual orientation, gender identity, or religious beliefs.

The ACLU argues that the policy opens the door for discrimination in the complaint filed on behalf of transgender and non-binary students.

The ACLU filed the complaint last week asking the U.S. Department of Education to order the Central Bucks School District to follow federal recommendations outlining how to support students within the LGBTQ+ community.

This debate comes after controversies over other policies, such as new library rules banning certain books involving sexual themes and instructing teachers to not use different pronouns for a student, unless a parent agrees.

There was strong public comment on both sides of this during the board meeting.

A second reading of the school district's policy is set for next month.

Dana Hunter, President, Central Bucks Board of School Directors, released the following statement to Action News:

"As you may know, the ACLU filed an administrative complaint against the district just this past Thursday, alleging discrimination based on sex, and I wanted to take a moment to address that. First and foremost, the district is resolute and united in its commitment that every single student in our community - every single one - can learn and grow while being safe, welcomed, cared for, and supported. That means the district is also resolute and united in its zero tolerance for discrimination, bullying, or harassment of any kind. We have policies in place to protect children; those policies are for every administrator, faculty member, and support staff to follow. Should a staff member fail to follow those policies, they put student wellbeing at risk.

"What the ACLU has done is publicly release a complaint, via the press - and I should note that the district has yet to receive official notice of the complaint - with some 27 pages of wholly redacted information from 7 unnamed individuals. The anonymous and hidden nature of this information makes it impossible for our administrators, school counselors, and teachers to do the critical work of connecting with these unnamed individuals to intervene and address any possible bullying or problematic situations, to activate support and resources, and to implement corrective actions with the goal of bringing about positive change. I call on the ACLU to immediately provide its full complaint, without redactions, and bring to the Board's attention any specific allegations of discrimination, harassment, or bullying of any kind so that the allegations can be investigated and addressed appropriately.

"Please, if you are a student experiencing bullying or a family member who is concerned that your student is the target of discrimination or harassment of any kind, please come to your building principal, to your teachers, or to anyone in our administration so that we can work together to support you and rectify the situation."