All Gender Restroom SignageYesterday, in response to the withdrawal of federal guidance relating to the rights of transgender students, Connecticut Governor Dannel Malloy instructed Connecticut public schools to continue to follow the withdrawn guidance, pending the release of state guidance from the Connecticut State Department of Education on the rights of transgender individuals in Connecticut schools. Specifically, Governor Malloy referred public school superintendents to the May 13, 2016 Dear Colleague Letter jointly issued by the U.S. Department of Justice and U.S. Department of Education, and subsequently rescinded by these agencies on February 22, 2017.

In his statement to school superintendents, Governor Malloy expressed dismay and disappointment that the federal government had rescinded its guidance protecting the civil rights of transgender youth. Governor Malloy affirmed “Connecticut’s steadfast commitment to defend the rights of all students – regardless of gender identity or expression, race, color, sex, religion, national origin, immigration status, sexual orientation or disability.” Governor Malloy reflected that Connecticut has been at the forefront of supporting equality and protections for members of our lesbian, gay, bi-sexual and transgender (LGBT) community,” and asserted that “Connecticut law provides for greater protections transgender people than federal law.” The Governor’s statement reproached the Trump administration for its actions and urged Connecticut public school leaders to continue to act with “attention and urgency in making sure that all of Connecticut’s school children and families feel welcome, respected and valued” in Connecticut schools.

A copy of the Governor’s statement may be found here (State Guidance for Districts Regarding Transgender Students).