Indianapolis archdiocese’s new school policy might bar transgender students

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Indianapolis and the Indiana State Capitol. (Image by David Mark from Pixabay)

INDIANAPOLIS — The Archdiocese of Indianapolis’s new school policy may bar transgender students from attending their schools.

The archdiocese came under fire last year for firing a gay guidance counselor at one high school and trying to split another high school from the archdiocese for not firing a gay teacher.

According to the National Catholic Reporter, the policy states “any student whose ‘gender’ has been legally changed from their biological sex, or who has chemically and/or surgically altered their given biology, may not be eligible for enrollment.”

The policy requires that students are addressed using “the pronoun correlating to their biological sexual identity,” and that any use of facilities such as locker rooms, bathrooms, and overnight accommodations must be utilized based on one’s biological sex.

The eight-page document, “Policy and Complementary Norms on Sexual Identity in School Ministries,” was signed by Archbishop Charles Thompson and Chancellor Annette Lentz and, according to NCR, draws heavily on a 2019 document from the Vatican’s Congregation for Catholic Education, “Male and Female He Created Them: Towards a Path of Dialogue on the Question of Gender Theory in Education.”

The independent news outlet reported that when the archdiocese sent the new policy to school officials on June 17, they stated that the policy should not be included in faculty/staff and parent/student handbooks.

The archdiocese has not responded to NCR’s requests for comment.

The outlet said this was the latest in a series of policies on similar issues. NCR reported that Springfield Bishop Thomas Paprocki issued a new policy that allowed for the possibility of the “immediate corrective action, suspension, and possible termination” of transgender students or workers.

Other similar policies had also been put in place in Minnesota and Little Rock, Ark.

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