In La Faeira, Texas, Jeydon Loredo, a transgendered student who identifies as male, is fighting back against his school’s decision to cut him out of this year’s yearbook. Why? Because like the other boys in the school, he is wearing a tuxedo. Loredo told KGBT Action 4 News that the school district informed him that the photo does meet "community standards.”
Jeydon’s mother, Stella Loredo, says that La Feria Independent School District Superintendent Rey Villarreal told her that Jeydon would only appear in the yearbook if he wore a drape or blouse. The decision to cut him out has Mom Loredo angry, “We all support him and for the school district to be making this decision… saying he is not male and not allowing this photo to be in there, it’s infuriating."
Jeydon and Stella reached out to the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), one of the nation’s most prominent LGBT rights organizations, for help in the matter. However, a meeting that included the Loredos, representatives from the HRC, and Superintendent Villarrael did not resolve the manner. According to SouthTexasNews.net, Villarrael told Jeydon that the photo ‘would offend community standards’ and informed Jeydon he could file an appeal to the school board.”
After being told this, Jeydon and Stella retained a lawyer from the Southern Poverty Law Center, a “nonprofit civil rights organization dedicated to fighting hate and bigotry.” Attorney Alesdair Ittelson told KGBT that by refusing to publish the picture, the school district is violating their own nondiscrimination policies, and "We are going to do what is necessary to make sure that Jeydon's portrait is in the yearbook, and that he's in the yearbook wearing a tuxedo like the other boys in his school. We hope that we don’t have to bring a federal lawsuit, but if it becomes necessary we absolutely will take it there.”
Meanwhile Jeydon, a model student according tothe Valley Morning Star, simply hopes to be in senior year yearbook, “I just want to be in the yearbook to be remembered years down the road because people are going to forget their classmates, and that’s going to be the only way to remember each other… so that’s all I want.” If you want to voice your support for Jeydon, the HRC has set up a form to send a letter to the La Feria School Board.
- Society & Culture