Virginia School District Celebrates ‘Transgender and Non-Binary Youth’

EdNews Virginia | March 4, 2024

In a Friday afternoon email, Arlington Public Schools announced the district will observe a “National Day of Reading: A Celebration of Stories Supporting Transgender and Non-Binary Youth” on Monday, March 4. The email did not include opt-out information for parents.

EdNews Virginia emailed the district’s spokesman on Saturday with a series of questions — to date, we have received no answers. Meanwhile, a self-identified teacher in the district is sounding the alarm to county parents. The educator, who out of fear of retaliation wishes to remain anonymous for now, shared directives received from the district’s central office.

“Formerly we celebrated Read Across America week and with the addition of SEL day but this year we were given a great opportunity to highlight two of our priorities into a weeklong focus,” reads a message from administrators Jennifer Gross and Amy Hailey.

The message from Gross and Hailey includes a link to 28 YA Books With Trans and Nonbinary Characters — titles include Transmogrify!: 14 Fantastical Tales of Trans Magic and Out Now: Queer We Go Again. Educators were additionally given a YouTube video “to show your class.”

The recommended video is Who Are You? The Kid’s Guide to Gender Identity: A Read Aloud. “When babies are born, people ask ‘is it a boy are a girl?’ Babies can’t talk, so grownups make a guess by looking at their bodies. This is the sex assigned to you at birth — male or female,” the narrator tells viewers.


In 2019, Arlington Public Schools drew national attention over a transgender-themed reading event for Kindergartners. “I have a girl brain but a boy body. This is called transgender. I was born this way,” transgender advocate Sarah McBride read to students from I Am Jazz.

The Washington Examiner’s Kate Hardiman reported that parents were not afforded the opportunity to opt-out in advance of the 2019 transgender-themed reading with Kindergartners. “Though the school sent a letterĀ home to parents, no opt-out option was mentioned and the communication occurred less than a week prior to the event,” Hardiman wrote.