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GARDNER, Kan. — A policy that would require students to use the bathroom of their sex at birth and require parent approval for pronoun changes was debated for hours at Gardner Edgerton USD 231 Monday night.

Now the ACLU is also taking issue with concerns that teachers might have to “out” students to parents.

“I’m in favor of boys using the boys restroom, girls using the girls restrooms,” School Board member Lana Sutton told the rest of the board.

“We understand these are difficult waters maybe even treacherous waters, but we are trying to bring everyone together in best way,” Superintendent Dr. Brian Huff said.

But for multiple meetings the issue has seemed to divide the community. They heard from transgender former students against the policy.

“I’m older and braver now. I want to stand up for my people because that’s what we are people,” Carter Robinson said.

Some parents said they should be notified if their child has a different gender identity or pronoun at school.

“Parents in the US have a constitutional right to control the upbringing of their children. This is not a trivial right it is a fundamental one,” Moms For Liberty member Erica Sheets said.

“You refer to the Bible often. Where yours generosity, your courage, your love, your hope and your peace,” Christina Hodges said.

All but one board member, Katie Williams, seems to favor the policy, with the remaining members pointing out students can still use a gender neutral bathroom.

“It’s still going to put us at 90% or better who we are not protecting if we let a boy go into the girls restroom,” Board President Tom Reddin said.

“Protecting from what?” Williams responded.

No final decision was made. The board decided to send out staff surveys to get their input on the policy first.

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