Gender Justice’s Letter to Becker Public Schools
In March 2022, Minnesota's Becker County Public Schools invited the Child Protection League - a designated hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center – to speak at their school board meeting. We've seen the irreversible harm that happens when school districts go down this path, and it's not good.
Gender Justice was beyond troubled to hear that the Becker Public Schools school board invited an anti-transgender and anti-gay hate group to speak at their March school board meeting.
We already know how this story ends for the Becker School District if the school board continues down in this path. In 2011, the Anoka-Hennepin School District became infamous around the country after inviting anti-LGBTQ+ groups to overtake school board meetings, provide bogus legal advice, and push policies that are harmful to LGBTQ+ youth. The school district put the wishes of a small but vocal group of adults over the well-being of the district’s own students. The district was completely unequipped to keep their students safe. According to news reports and a legal complaint filed against the school, the abuse, harassment, and bullying was so rampant, eight children in the school district died by suicide, and additional students considered or attempted suicide.
Schools have a duty under the Minnesota Human Rights Act to ensure that students are not subject to hostile environments in school on account of their sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, or transgender status.
There is nothing “neutral” about inviting a designated anti-LGBTQ hate group to speak at a school board meeting and then erasing evidence of support for LGBTQ+ youth.
You can read our letter to the Superintendent of Becker Public Schools that lays out what’s at stake – for students, their families, and the school district – if Becker Public Schools continue down this path.