Board of Education Passes LGBTQIA+ Resolution
The HUSD Board of Education passed a resolution last night reaffirming its commitment to making the district a safe haven for LGBTQIA+ youth, staff and families. The board voted 4-1 in favor of the resolution. Trustees Peter Bufete, April Oquedna, Ken Rowdon and Sara Prada voted in support, and Trustee Joe Ramos voted against.
“We are creating a safer space for our students,’’ Board President Bufete said at the meeting. “When we raised the Pride flag at Hayward High School, a student came up to us and said, ‘Thank you so much. I don't feel like I am ever represented. But now that my flag is raised, I do feel like I am a part of this campus.’ If that is just one student we have made feel better, that’s worth it.
Trustee Prada emphasized the need to "create safe spaces of learning and compassion in our schools."
Video of the board and public discussion, and vote on the resolution, is here.
The resolution reads:
BOARD OF EDUCATION RESOLUTION 2223-41
HUSD Community Declaration of Support for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and/or Nonbinary, Queer, Questioning, Intersex, Agender, Asexual
(LGBTQIA+) Youth, Staff & Families
WHEREAS, it is the policy of the Hayward Unified School District that all persons, including those who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and/or nonbinary, queer, questioning, intersex, agender and asexual, have an equal and nondiscriminatory opportunity to a quality public education experience; and
WHEREAS, globally and nationally, LGBTQIA+ people are experiencing a sharp increase in the rollback of their civil rights, including new educational laws that restrict the acknowledgment and teaching of their history, identities and support needs in public schools, and legal bans on accessing healthcare, sports teams, facilities, and programs; and
WHEREAS, many LGBTQIA+ people, and people perceived by others to belong to these groups, still face homophobic and transphobic harassment and physical violence in communities; and
WHEREAS, the Hayward Unified School District deplores harassment and physical violence or the threat of such against any of our students, faculty, staff and families; and
WHEREAS, the Hayward Board of Education believes that the rich variety and diversity of families and communities is one of Hayward Unified School District's strengths, and furthermore believes that a family is a supportive unit composed of various genders, sexual orientations, cultures, races, ethnicities and religions; and
WHEREAS, the Hayward Board of Education values and celebrates the diverse voices and experiences of our students, teachers, staff, administrators and all families, including the diversity of sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression and intersectional identity in our community; and
WHEREAS, the Hayward Board of Education has made a commitment to achieving and fostering diversity and acceptance in our staff, our school population, and in our curriculum; and
WHEREAS, the California Education Code has been updated over time to ensure that the contributions that members of underrepresented racial, ethnic and cultural groups have made to the economic, political, and social development of California and the United States are included in history and social studies lessons; and
WHEREAS, Hayward Unified School District’s adopted curriculum materials comply with the 2011 California FAIR Act, which requires that the diverse groups represented in history and social studies instruction include members of the LGBTQIA+ community and that they are represented fairly and accurately, and are integrated in lessons throughout the school year; and
WHEREAS, the Hayward Board of Education acknowledges the more than ten California laws passed since the year 2000 that specifically address LGBTQIA+ youth rights, numerous California laws that inclusively address LGBTQIA+ students rights along with all students’ rights, and laws that protect LGBTQIA+ employees from harassment; and now, therefore,
BE IT RESOLVED that the Hayward Board of Education and Hayward Unified School District reaffirms its commitment to informing and supporting our administrators, teachers, counselors, staff, students, families and community members about our duty to protect and support LGBTQIA+ youth, staff and families in alignment with California law and HUSD Board Policies, including, but not limited to:
Protecting the rights of LGBTQIA+ and all youth to receive a general curriculum that includes the historical and present-day contributions of LGBT identities along with those of other groups (FAIR Act 2011);
Protecting the rights of all youth to learn in school environments that are free from homophobic, transphobic and misogynistic harassment; Understanding our staff duty to intervene in all forms of bullying, harassment and discrimination toward all identities or situations every time we witness it and when it is safe to do so; Investigating all forms of bullying/harassment complaints (verbal, written, emailed, complaint form), following established HUSD protocols and implementing/monitoring appropriate corrective action to end the harassment (Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, AB 9, Seth’s Law 2011, HUSD BP 5145.3 Nondiscrimination and Harassment); and now, therefore,
BE IT RESOLVED that the Hayward Board of Education and Hayward Unified School District is committed to supporting ally clubs such as Gender-Sexuality Alliance clubs in middle and high schools, and Rainbow Clubs in elementary schools that support LGBTQIA+ youth and allies to meet in safe and supportive environments, learn about LGBTQIA+ history and identities, promote education and understanding, and aim to reduce bullying/harassment; and now, therefore,
BE IT RESOLVED that the Hayward Board of Education and Hayward Unified School District affirms the teaching of inclusive lessons about LGBTQIA+ identities and history integrated throughout the school year, and affirms nationally celebrated educational events as opportunities to do so, such as but not limited to, LGBT History Month and Bullying Prevention Month in October, Solidarity Week and Transgender Awareness Month in November, and LGBTQIA+ Pride Month in June; and now, therefore,
BE IT RESOLVED that the Hayward Board of Education and Hayward Unified School District proclaim that during each and every annual LGBTQIA+ Pride Month in June, the updated Progress Pride rainbow flag will be flown at each school and facility within the Hayward Unified School District to signify support and respect for the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and/or nonbinary, queer, questioning, intersex, agender and asexual community; and now, therefore,
BE IT RESOLVED that the Hayward Board of Education and Hayward Unified School District will provide adequate training to all staff, and education to students, in service of fulfilling our duty to protect LGBTQIA+ youth aligned with California Law and HUSD Board Policies; and now, therefore,
BE IT RESOLVED that the Hayward Board of Education and Hayward Unified School District reaffirms its commitment to making HUSD a safe haven for LGBTQIA+ youth, staff and families, fostering a vibrant community that supports all people to be free to express the most authentic version of themselves so we can learn together in a culture of respect and inclusion.
PASSED AND ADOPTED by the Board on this 14th day of June 2023.