The 5 W’s of our School’s Gender Support Plan

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Art by Theodora Hirms

The Gender Spectrum is vast and can be confusing. The Gender Plan works to help you make a set outline of steps to help you feel comfortable and safe in your body and your school .

Oona Shain and Theodora Hirmes

Daily tasks like walking into the school bathroom, changing in the locker room, and being called on by your teacher may not seem challenging or difficult for you, but for many these everyday experiences can cause discomfort, fear, and anxiety. 

Students deserve to feel safe and supported in school, regardless of gender identity or expression. Our school has joined the thousands of schools across the country that are working towards gender equity by developing and enacting a Gender Support Plan. 

So, what does this mean? 

We’re here to answer the most common questions! 

What is the school’s Gender Plan? 

The Gender Plan is a document that creates shared understanding about the ways in which a student’s gender will be accounted for and supported at school. It provides a safe transition for non-cisgender students looking for support from their school. 

Who is the Gender Plan for?

The Gender Plan is for non-cisgender students. Cisgender (often abbreviated to just cis) is a term for people whose gender identify matches the sex they were assigned at birth. Students who are transgender, questioning or examining their own gender identity, or non-binary, can use the plan to get support from the school. 

Oona Shain
Ms. Rodier is helping to develop and to improve our Gender Plan. She’s happy to answer any questions and is a great first person to talk to.

Where do you get a form?

The first step is going to a trusted adult. This could be one of your teachers or your guidance counselor. They will help you get in contact with Ms. Rodier, who will go through this plan with you side-by-side. She has access to the form, and will help you fill it out and answer any questions you might have.

Why is it needed? 

The gender plan is needed to create shared understanding among school staff, parents/guardians, and a student. The document address and outlines how a student’s gender will be supported and addressed at school. It allows staff and faculty members to support their students and helps to answer questions for students and staff. Students need to feel supported and safe in an environment they spend most of their time in.

When is a good time to seek out a Gender Plan?

Anytime is an okay time to ask about the Gender Plan. You may already know that you are transgender or non-binary and that you need help with a safe and comfortable transition. That’s great! The gender plan is here to support you! Or you just might be curious about gender and how you fit in. Regardless of your gender identity or stage in the process, the Gender Plan is a great document to support you! 

If you want to read more about gender identity and how you fall into yours, click this link. It’s normal to be nervous or even scared, but the school is here with you every step of the way.