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Formal template to inform faith-based schools about your child’s gender identity

Simply tailor the template to your specific circumstances to create a personalised letter or email

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Education & Recreation
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<Your full name>

<Contact’s name>

To whom it may concern,

I am writing to inform you that [select my son / my daughter / the young person] – who you previously knew as <young person’s previous name> is gender diverse.

[Her / His / Their] gender identity does not align with the [female / male] gender they were assigned at birth, and [she identifies / he identifies / they identify / <other>] as <gender identity>, which means [her / his / their / <other>] gender is [female / male / a mix of female and male / neither female nor male / <other description>].

Being gender diverse is just one example of natural human diversity. Research shows when a young person’s gender identity is affirmed, it can have powerfully positive impacts on their mental health and wellbeing.

Children spend a large amount of their time at school. But it can be a challenging place; especially so for transgender, gender diverse, and non-binary children. They can experience bullying, discrimination, and invalidation. Conversely, being educated in an environment where they feel safe, respected, and supported gives young gender diverse people the space they need to navigate their life into adulthood.

We also recognise that as the school is conducted according to the teachings, doctrines and beliefs of <the religion>, it may choose rely on the exemption listed in Section 38 of Australia’s Sex Discrimination Act (1984), and ask <name> to leave the school.

<Name> would love to stay at the school. [She has / He has / They have / <Other>] established friendships here, and being asked to leave the school community would cause both [her / him / them / <other>] and [myself / us] a great deal of distress. There are already religious schools around the country who are choosing not to exclude students on the grounds of their gender identity. Working with their students and their parents and carers, these schools are offering gender affirming solutions to make their students feel welcome. These demonstrations of acceptance and respect for diversity will benefit other students.

We do hope you will be happy to work with us and commit to taking the following appropriate steps to affirm <name>’s gender at school.

Request to change record of personal details

[She is / He is / They are / <Other>] currently on record with you as: <Young person’s previously listed name>
[Her / His / Their / <Other>] preferred name is: <new name>
[Her / His / Their / <Other>] personal pronouns are: [She/Her/Hers / He/Him/His / They/Them/Their / <Other>]
[Her / His / Their / <Other>] legal name is: <legal name>

I would like to request that [her / his / their / <other>] details be updated in your records accordingly.

[I enclose a certified copy of <name>’s new Birth Certificate / Change of name Certificate / An updated Birth Certificate has been ordered, and will be supplied to you once received.]

Providing safe, gender-affirming care

I trust that all educators, staff and students will make their best efforts to use <name>’s correct name and pronouns at all times, and that if any educators or staff notice anyone using an incorrect name or pronouns, to please correct that person immediately. I understand that this is an adjustment that can take time to get used to and understand that mistakes can happen. In this case, a simple and sincere apology to <name> would be most appreciated.

I request that, in line with State legislation, <name> has the freedom to access the [girls / boys / disabled / staff] toilet facilities and change rooms and be kept safe from bullying or harassment from other students when doing so. I also request that they be permitted to be placed into the [girls / boys] group for sports or other activities.

[I have attached a copy of / I have enclosed a copy of / Here’s a link to] A Guide for Schools: Information on supporting gender diverse students from Transcend Australia. It will help your educators and staff affirm <name>’s gender identity at school. I would also like to work through their [attached / enclosed] Student Support Plan – Gender Affirmation with relevant educators and staff. Please advise a suitable time for us to discuss this in person.

For your reference, [I have attached / I have enclosed / here is a link to] the Australian Sex Discrimination Act (1984), which details in Section 5B my child’s right to not be discriminated against on the grounds of [her / him / them / <other>] gender identity, and in Section 22, [her / his / their / <other>] rights to goods, services and access to facilities.

Thank you for your understanding. I look forward to working together to support <name>’s mental health and wellbeing during [her / his / their / <other>] gender transition. If you have any questions, please contact me at <your phone number> and <email>. If you need professional, specialist advice, have questions, or just want to talk through your approach, contact Transcend Australia or email them at families@transcendaus.org.

<your signature>

<your full name>