COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) – The Columbus City School Board is responding to a resolution being considered by the Ohio Board of Education.
“This legislation is absolutely disgusting,” said Columbus City School Board President Jennifer Adair. “It promotes just blatant discrimination, and it is just full of hate.”
During the state board’s meeting Tuesday, dozens spoke out on a resolution that could roll back new federal protections for LGBTQ+ students.
Columbus’ board also met Tuesday, and through what they said and what they wore, the Columbus City School Board is making it clear that it opposes the resolution being considered by the state board.
The meeting was mostly a discussion while outlining what the board plans to do going forward.
Board members and some other district employees wore matching shirts with pride colors and the words “safe space” in the middle of a heart.
“Columbus city schools is a safe space and our shirts represent that,” Adair said.
The shirts, designed by students, were just part of the board’s response to the resolution.
“This is just horrendous and it’s nasty,” Columbus board member Eric Brown said. “I can’t think of enough foul words to apply, and I think we ought to stand up for our LGBTQ community and for the rest of our school community.”
The resolution is called “A Resolution to Support Parents, Schools, and Districts in Rejecting Harmful, Coercive and Burdensome Gender Identity Policies.” It is against Title IX changes announced over the summer that includes protections for LGBTQ students from discrimination based on sexual orientation, gender identity, and sex characteristics.
“Women and girls like my three daughters stand to lose an awful lot with these regulations,” said Ohio Board of Education member Brendan Shea, who formally introduced the measure Tuesday. “Gender will become purely a matter of identity rather than objective fact.”
After a day-long meeting, the state board pushed a vote on the resolution to October.
“I’m not laying any of this at the feet of young people who transidentify,” Shea said. “I have nothing but compassion and empathy for them. I’m laying this at the feet of big people, adults who are imposing these policies and regulations and, yes, contributing to the recruitment and grooming nature of a movement that’s sweeping our youth and nation by storm.”
“The discussions at the state board of education really just promoting flat out discrimination against our LGBT community are really disheartening and disgusting,” Adair said.
The Columbus school board plans to release a statement Wednesday with all members’ signatures. Members also said the board will introduce its own resolution against what the state board is considering and plan on testifying to the state board.