A few thoughts.
First, thanks to AAPS board member Glenn Nelson for sharing the AAPS experience:
He said he believes it's important for the Saline board to add that language to its policy because it would contribute positively to the county’s reputation, has been beneficial in Ann Arbor and because the students from Saline are so passionate [in support of ordinance expansion]. (Annarbor.com article.)
Second, Saline school board member Chuck Lesch implied that Saline couldn't expand their policy because the state of Michigan didn't include gender identity or sexual orientation in their list of "protected classes."
The state of Michigan does not prohibit Saline (or any other public body) from adding additional classes for protection. Lots of local public bodies have expanded lists of protected classes. Think of the state's law as a floor, not a ceiling.
Third, Saline school board member Paul Hynak said that the root of the problem is bullying. I would submit that bullying and issues of sexual orientation and gender identity do intersect, but not all sexual orientation problems in schools are related to bullying, and not all bullying problems in schools are related to sexual orientation. In other words, if bullying needs to be brought under control, let us bring it under control in all cases. That's important, but it is at least partially a separate issue.
So--tomorrow night, September 14th, the full board will discuss this issue.
6:30 p.m., Liberty School media center, 7265 Saline-Ann Arbor Road--turn out to support the students and support the expansion of the non-discrimination policy!
The issue may be voted on September 28th, 6:30 p.m., Liberty School media center, 7265 Saline-Ann Arbor Road.