Angela Tycenski, a mother from New Jersey, is standing up for a school board’s new policy that mandates teachers to inform parents if their children express a desire to change their gender identity. In her pursuit, Tycenski has enlisted the legal support of the Goldwater Institute, specifically attorney Adam Shelton, who argues that the state’s opposition to the policy violates the United States Constitution.
Tycenski’s objective is to ensure that schools prioritize transparency and willingly share relevant information with parents, particularly when it concerns matters that could impact her children’s mental health and overall well-being. This includes decisions related to the use of different names or pronouns.
A recent development saw approximately 100 parents gather outside a courthouse in New Jersey. At the hearing, a judge deliberated whether to halt the implementation of the new policy in three school districts. These districts had previously approved the policy on June 20. However, less than a day later, New Jersey’s attorney general, Matthew J. Platkin, acting on behalf of Democratic Governor Phil Murphy’s administration, filed “emergency” lawsuits challenging the policy.
Platkin argued that informing parents about a student’s gender identity could potentially lead to severe mental health risks, physical harm, and the inability to create a safe and supportive learning environment. The state’s lawsuit contends that such policies run contrary to New Jersey’s Law Against Discrimination and the Department of Education’s guidelines for transgender students.
Shelton, representing Tycenski, reiterated that the state’s argument is based on an interpretation of New Jersey’s intent and anti-discrimination law that contradicts both the U.S. Constitution and the state’s constitution. This legal battle focuses on balancing parental rights with the need to protect transgender students, further shedding light on the ongoing debates surrounding education policies and parental involvement.