FORT WORTH (CBSDFW.COM) – The bathroom battle has come back to North Texas and this time the Fort Worth Independent School District is at the center of the controversy. Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick has called for the resignation of FWISD Superintendent Dr. Kent Scribner after he instituted a new transgender student bathroom policy.
Patrick will be in North Texas tonight, ahead of a school board meeting at Fort Worth ISD headquarters.
The transgender bathroom issue will undoubtedly draw a big crowd, with people on both sides of the debate voicing their opinion.
Fort Worth ISD guidelines state:
“The District requires all personnel to acknowledge the gender identity that each student consistently and uniformly asserts.”
The policy also states that children who feel uncomfortable sharing a restroom will be given access to other options, like a single stall bathroom.
Patrick is accusing Superintendent Scribner of putting his own political agenda before students and for not discussing the issue with parents or board members.
“After less than a year as superintendent, Dr. Scribner has lost his focus and thereby his ability to lead the Fort Worth ISD. He has placed his own personal political agenda ahead of the more than 86,000 students attending 146 schools in the district by unilaterally adopting ‘Transgender Student Guidelines,’” he said.
One board member told CBS 11 News that the guidelines were drafted at the beginning of the summer – in 2015. Scribner was only named as the FWISD superintendent finalist in August of that same year.
Patrick will hold a press conference just before the 5:30 p.m. school board meeting, at 2903 Shotts Street.
While some are simply dismissing Patrick’s assertions, University of Texas at Arlington professor Allen Saxe says his efforts against the policy should be taken seriously. “The Lieutenant Governor essentially runs the senate. A lot of textbooks say the Lieutenant Governor is the most powerful person in office.”
Saxe said, “I would not be surprised at all if the legislature passed a law similar to North Carolina’s.” The recently passed law — known as HB2 – restricts the use of public restrooms by transgender people, requiring them to use the public restroom that corresponds with the gender on their birth certificate
Meanwhile, FWISD school board president Jacinto Ramos, Jr. is standing by Superintendent Scribner. He released a statement that said, “We have enormous confidence in Superintendent Kent P. Scribner, his team, and our Board. We are focused on creating a strong, safe and productive learning environment for ALL students.”
Members of Gateway Church in Southlake and the group Fairness Fort Worth are expected to be among the crowd at the meeting tonight.
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