Gender Identity and Expression in TLDSB Schools2019-07-11T11:42:25-04:00

Gender Identity and Expression in Trillium Lakelands District School Board (TLDSB) Schools

In TLDSB, students have the right to use the washroom or change room that corresponds with the gender with which they identify.

Everyone is protected from harassment based on gender identity and expression

The Human Rights Code protects an individual’s right to live their own gender identity. Transgender people are to be recognized and respected as the gender they live in. Gender identity and sexual orientation are two different things. Transgender is about an individual’s gender identity, while being gay is about an individual’s sexual orientation. As a publicly funded school board, it is a shared responsibility with our school community to welcome and accommodate the needs of transgender people.

Everyone has a right to privacy

Wherever possible, TLDSB buildings provide an easily accessible, all-gender, single use washroom/change room for use by anyone who desires increased privacy, regardless of the underlying reason. School boards have the responsibility to treat everyone’s personal information as confidential. Parents and students are welcome to speak with their school principal for any required support.

In TLDSB everyone is supported in safe and accepted schools

If you have concerns, or your child is uncomfortable, they have the right to use the single use facilities. Education, including supportive and affirming language for discussing gender identity and expression, will be shared in classrooms and with school communities. Schools work in cooperation with students (and their family) to develop a plan that will meet their needs. The school will work to provide any accommodations necessary.

Cisgender: a person whose gender identity aligns with their biological sex (e.g. a person who is biologically female and identifies as a woman or biologically male and identifies as a man).

Gender expression: how a person expresses gender, such as what clothes they wear, their hairstyle, activities they participate in, etc.

Gender identity: a person’s sense of their gender as being female, male, or a combination of both. Gender identity may or may not align with the person’s biological sex.

Gender nonconforming: a person who differs from the stereotypical expectations of their gender (example: a female dressing in “male” clothes). How this is understood differs in different cultures.

Sexual orientation: a description of how a person experiences sexual and romantic attraction. Sexual orientations can include asexual (not experiencing sexual attraction), heterosexual (experiencing attraction to another sex), lesbian and gay (experiencing attraction to the same sex), bisexual (experiencing attraction to more than one sex) and more. It’s important to remember that all of us have both a sexual orientation and a gender identity. Knowing a person’s trans status does not give you any information on their sexual orientation.

Trans girl/woman: a person whose biological sex assigned at birth is male, but whose gender identity is female. She may be transitioning or have already transitioned into being a female.

Trans boy/man: a person whose biological sex assigned at birth is female, but whose gender identity is male. He may be transitioning or have already transitioned into being a male.

Transgender: a person whose gender identity is different from their biological sex assigned at birth (example: someone who is born biologically male and identifies as a female).

Transition: the process where a person goes from living and identifying as one gender to living and identifying as another.

Two Spirit: an identity used by First Nations people to acknowledge that many nations have and historically had specific roles for people who we might now identify as LGBTQ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, Queer).

TLDSB Resources:

Creating a Positive Space: Supporting our Transgender Students
Creating a Positive Space: Supporting our LGBTQ2S+ Students

The National Center for Transgender Equality – Organization devoted to ending discrimination and violence against transgender people through education and advocacy on national issues of importance to transgender people.

Girl Guides of Canada – Strive to provide environments where girls and women from all walks of life, identities, and lived experiences feel a sense of belonging and can participate fully.

Gender Creative Kids   Browse their library to find helpful resources for parents and caregivers, educators, service providers, trans youth and children.

CHEO – Information on gender identity and diversity is helpful for parents trying to navigate this with their own children.

Transparent Canada – Great resource for parents looking for community. This site offers many definitions and trans-positive links.

Ontario Human Right’s Commission – Information on gender identity and gender expression in the Human Rights Code.

Gender Spectrum – This site provides consultation, training, and events designed to help families, educators, professionals, and organizations understand and address the concepts of gender identity and expression.

Puzzle Peace – Resources to inspire and create a more peaceful world.


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