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Catholic Schools form draft gender identity policy

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The Grande Prairie Catholic school board has come up with a draft version of its proposed sexual orientation and gender identity policy ahead of the March 31st deadline.

As part of the procedure, every school should provide access to a private washroom for any student who wants more privacy, as well as a private changing room for anyone uncomfortable using the common one for any reason. It also includes a provision that with a written request from a student’s parent or guardian, an alternative uniform will be made available.

The need for the policy came from the passing of Bill 10 in March 2015, which gave students the right to have Gay-Straight Alliances in schools and added sexual orientation, sex, gender identity and gender expression to the Alberta Bill of Rights.

One of the proposed procedures outlines that if a student wants to address matters involving sexual identity through a student organization, they should approach the principal of their school. Any group would be created under a framework developed by the Council of Catholic School Superintendents of Alberta and would be led by trained Catholic facilitators. A notification will also be sent to all students and parents, without naming any people involved.

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