NOTE: This edition is updated to reflect the fact that Superintendent Taymore and Liz DeSelm are issuing this statement in their capacity as individuals.
MELROSE — Superintendent of Schools Cyndy Taymore and Melrose School Committee member Liz DeSelm have joined an amicus curiae (friend of the court) brief with the United States Supreme Court in the case of Gloucester County School Board v. G.G. In the brief, the two reassert their unwavering support for the rights of LGBTQ students as educational leaders.
They join other superintendents, principals, school board members, attorneys, social workers, and other officials from school districts in at least 28 states that have inclusive policies and practices for their transgender students and have signed on to the Supreme Court brief.
“As an educator, I have been involved in efforts to support the basic educational rights of lesbian, bisexual, gay, transgender, and questioning students for decades,” Superintendent Taymore said. “All students have the right to feel equal and empowered as they seek equal access to education with other children. In Melrose, we strive to create a welcoming and safe environment for all students, regardless of sexual orientation, gender, or gender identity.”
Superintendent Taymore also frequently partners with the Safe Schools Program for LGBTQ Students program under the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education.
“Students today are under more pressure to perform than ever before. Between rigorous academic expectations, co-curricular commitments and social pressures, many students are challenged to find their own identity and gain acceptance. In recognizing the journey to self actualization differs for all, and with firm belief that all are welcome in our schools, I strongly support all students, faculty, staff, and people having the ability to use facilities corresponding to their innate gender identity,” DeSelm said. “The academic environment is already challenging. We should strive to provide a safe space where academics is the focus, not marginalization.”
The Law Firm of Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP is providing free legal services for this amicus brief.