The Accomack County School Board voted 4-4-1, effectively declining the policy regarding transgender and nonbinary students, Chairman Paul Bull said.
Had the policy been accepted, the schools in the district would have had to refer to students by their preferred pronouns, allow them to use the facilities aligning with their chosen gender identity, and let those students play on the athletic teams of their selected gender, as permitted by state policy.
The board will revisit the issue, Bull said, but the state superintendent said districts will not be punished if they choose not to adopt the protection.
Districts that refuse to comply with state law are subject to lawsuits from students and families.
In the future, systems will follow the proposed policy to guarantee the protection of all students, Bull said.
"I feel that the 4/4/1(abstained) vote was due to lack of information regarding how we would address bathroom and locker room issues once the policy is adopted," he wrote in an email Wednesday. "This policy will be addressed at a later meeting after a team has been organized to address issues of concern."
Accomack County Public Schools is not the first division in Virginia forced to revisit the policy regarding the state protections, according to a report.
Newport News Public Schools and Chesapeake Public Schools returned to debate the matter after both rejected to adopt it.
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Original Author: Luke Gentile