The Canyons School District’s website has a section for students titled “Student Services.” This section of the website has a category of resources titled “Social-Emotional Supports” with one page dedicated to “LGBTQ+ Resources.” Several LGBTQ organizations that target children are listed as resources, including “Encircle,” “The Trevor Project,” and “Utah Pride Center.” The following events from the Utah Pride Center targeting children is then listed by the school district:
- Youth Support Group – YSG is a peer-led support group that meets weekly on Tuesdays. There are two sessions; the 14-20 age group meets from 6:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. and the 10-14 age group meets from 6:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. An orientation is required.
- Parent and Caregivers Support Group – PCSG is a peer-led support group that meets weekly on Thursdays from 6:00-7:30. It is open to all parents and caregivers of LGBTQ+ youth.
- Youth Activity Nights – YAN is a social group that meets weekly. We do a variety of activities, like game nights, craft nights, and speaker nights. There are two sessions; the 14-20 age group meets on Mondays from 5:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. and the 10-14 age group meets from 6:00 p.m. – 7:15 p.m. An orientation is required.
- Drop in Social Hour – An unstructured social time that currently occurs on our Discord chat server. This is a time for youth to socialize outside of regular program hours.
The Utah Pride Center explains on its website that it even targets babies with LGBTQ initiatives. The organization states that it “serves youth and young adults ages 0-22 and their parents and caregivers.” The Utah Pride Center continues to explain that “we strive to ensure that LGBTQIA+ youth and families have a place to turn to no matter who they are, who they love, or what they may need.”
Encircle is also an organization that targets children with LGBTQ issues. The organization’s website explains that “LGBTQ+ youth and their friends drop by daily to join Friendship Circles, Programs, and to kick back during Drop-In Hours.” This is for ages 12 to 17. Encircle additionally provides therapy services “to LGBTQ+ persons and their family members who are struggling with mental health concerns connected to their sexual, gender, cultural, religious, or spiritual identities.”
The Trevor Project is a known organization that provides children with resources such as the “Understanding Gender Identities” guide. This resource states that “gender is actually a social construct.” The organization’s resource also appears to encourage children to question their gender and mentions the possibility of having surgery to transition:
If you decide that your current gender or sex just isn’t right, you may want to make your gender identity fit with your ideal gender expression and presentation. This is called “transitioning,” and can include social (like telling other people about which pronouns you like), legal (like changing your name, officially), or medical (like taking hormones, or having surgery). You don’t have to go through all of these things to be “officially” transgender, or to have your gender identity be valid. It’s all up to you, and what feels safe and comfortable.
The school district’s website also has a page titled “Suicide Prevention.” However, this page links to an organization titled the “Family Acceptance Project.” The organization explains that it openly attempts to influence churches and schools to embrace LGBTQ issues. The Family Acceptance Project explains:
We are continuing to release key publications and resources to make our findings, family intervention strategies and research-based practice information widely available for use in primary care, mental health, family services, schools, child welfare, juvenile justice and homeless services and congregations to build healthy futures for LGBTQ children and adolescents in the context of their families, cultures and faith communities.
On November 15, 2016, the school district appeared to update its “Nondiscrimination” policies for both students and personnel to specifically include “gender identity.” Both policies now explain: “Accordingly, no otherwise qualified person shall be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or otherwise be subjected to unlawful discrimination in any District program or activity on the basis of age, color, disability, gender, gender identity, national origin, pregnancy, race, religion, sexual orientation, or veteran status.”
The school district’s website also has a page titled “Equity in Action.” The school district attempts to argue on the page that “equity” and “inclusion” are “non-partisan.” When discussing Utah’s new equity rule, the school district states: “At the heart of the new rule is an assurance of opportunity and inclusion for all students, a philosophy embedded in CSD’s mission that every student graduate college- and career-ready.”