A Minnesota couple’s plot to bully their son’s school into adopting an expansive “gender fluid” policy has proved successful. Eager to avoid an expensive court battle, Nova Classical Academy agreed to comply with the parents’ wishes.
David and Hannah Edwards claimed to be appalled after they enrolled their five-year-old son into Nova and the school didn’t bend over backwards to give special treatment to the child when he decided he was trans.
“Even though (Nova) had adopted a gender-inclusion policy, it still had lots of holes in it, and those holes were ones that were directly tied to how she was discriminated against. It was very important to us to make it clear that they had to fix that. The fact that they did is amazing,” Hannah told a local reporter.
It certainly is amazing. Not only did the school capitulate to their demands, officials agreed to pay the Edwards family $120,000.
“We’re most happy with the non-monetary terms,” David Edwards said Tuesday. “We were able to get … Nova to clearly define their policies to prevent the school from discriminating against another child the way they discriminated against (H).”
To protect his identity, the Edwards’ child is known only as H.
When H switched genders the school announced that it would be holding classroom conversations about gender nonconformity and transgenderism in order to help students understand his condition.
“Transgender is new to a lot of people,” Nova executive director Eric Williams said at the time. “If we don’t make intentional efforts to educate kids on certain things … we are going to be putting out fires all the time.”
But the school’s efforts apparently weren’t enough. The Edwards decided to sue because of the supposed “discrimination” H faced.
Nova already adhered to a LGBT toolkit Minnesota school authorities had previously forced schools to adopt. The toolkit demanded private bathrooms for transgender students and specialized classes to promote LGBT values.
“It’s easier and safer to have policies in place from the beginning than to adopt policies in the midst of an individual situation like Nova did, inviting publicity and controversy that led to harm to the community, to our family, and to their school,” David said.
But the school did have transgender policies in place. They just weren’t considered good enough.
“A lot of the reason we wanted to continue with our human-rights charge and then eventually settling was so that other schools could see what to do to avoid the kind of experience that everyone had at Nova,” David explained. “If other schools are looking to prevent some of the negative attention and financial settlement, they have this tool kit available to them.”
H will not be able to experience Nova’s reformed policy. The child has been enrolled in a different school, where his parents say he is excelling.
Transgender youths are a controversial subject, and for obvious reasons. Little H was a toddler three years ago. He’s not equipped to make complicated decisions regarding his gender and sexuality.
“She tells every person that she meets that she’s going to go to Lady Gaga,” Hannah said. “She has this dream that she’s going to get to run up on stage and meet her. I keep trying to tell her, ‘No, that’s not really how it works. There are thousands of people at her concerts.’ ”
If the child is too young to understand how concerts work he’s probably too young to be transgender. Some doctors have gone so far as to say that transgender children are victims of abuse. Their parents are defining their futures in a way that they may grow up to reject. There’s even a push among some liberals to legalize transition surgeries on minors.