Collier schools consider parting with federal funding over transgender directive

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NAPLES, Fla. – Collier County Public Schools officials are ready to break with the federal government and forfeit $57 million over a U.S. Justice Department directive about the use of school facilities by transgender students.

Pres. Barack Obama launched the directive and told media outlets it is about protecting children.  

“I think that it is part of our obligation as a society to make sure that everybody is treated fairly, and our kids are all loved and that they’re protected and that their dignity is affirmed,” he said.

But Collier County School Board Member Kelly Litcher disagrees.

“Having this federal mandate seems extremely unreasonable and not good for our children,” she said.

Counties that do not adhere to the law, which directs schools to allow transgender students to use facilities that match their gender identities, risk losing $1.4 billion in funding from the federal government.

A recent memo sent from the U.S. Board of Education reiterated that “a school must allow transgender students access to such facilities consistent with their gender identity.”

If Collier County schools don’t comply, they could see the district’s budget cut by 10 percent. The voluntary cut in funding could affect 550 district employees and programs like Head Start, junior ROTC and homeless services for students.

Litcher said it is time to push back. She said she would consider raising taxes in order to refuse federal funding, noting that she is not a fan of higher taxes.

“We have to finally stand strong and say ‘You know what? Maybe we don’t the money after all’ and find alternate ways to make up for the funding,” Litcher said.

While some students, like Naples High School freshman Jenna Billings, think the district should adhere to the directive by allowing transgender students to make their own decisions.

“They haven’t done anything wrong to me so why treat them any different?” Billings said.

A handful of transgender students have asked for private bathrooms and changing areas, and their respective schools have made accommodations, according to Collier County school officials.

But some people believe bathrooms should be separated by a child’s sex at birth, Litcher included.

The district’s attorney is looking into the legality of the federal directive as leaders toy with what to do next. School board members will begin their discussion at the next meeting on June 14 at 4 p.m. Members are also seeking public input.

“I do think we need to start talking about it,” Litcher said.


4 thoughts on “Collier schools consider parting with federal funding over transgender directive

  1. Raising taxes on the people is no alternative.

    If people remove their children and educate them, the schools will cease to exist.

    Funding schools is another scam to drive us from our homes.

    1. yes, Katie. I have to agree, and I’ll go one better: I think someone’s unfit to be a parent if they allow their kids to attend pubic schools.

      It’s brainwashing, abuse, and it prevents them from getting an education rather than providing them with one.

  2. “Pres. Barack Obama launched the directive and told media outlets it is about protecting children.”

    Hilarious. This is the best “protecting the children” law I’ve heard to date.

    “We’re filling bathrooms across the country with perverts, because we want to ‘protect the children’.” It doesn’t get better than that.

    These government freaks are out of their minds.

  3. “But some people believe bathrooms should be separated by a child’s sex at birth, Litcher included.”

    SOME people?

    How about ANYONE with a shred of moral fiber left in this country, @sswipe!!!

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