Governor Jerry Brown vetoed a bill over the weekend (AB 2153) that would have required public school teachers get trained to encourage kids to embrace an LGBT+ identity if they struggled with same-sex attraction or gender confusion. That training would not include how to help kids with unwanted same-sex attraction, or who wanted help embracing their biological sex.
Brown’s veto message made financial and local-control arguments. The Governor pointed to laws he previously signed mandating schools provide resources to LGBT+ identifying students, and prohibiting discrimination or harassment on the basis sexual orientation or gender expression. “If local schools find that more training or resources on this topic is needed,” Brown wrote, “they have the flexibility to use their resources as they see best.”
AB 2153, authored by Assemblyman Tony Thurmond (D-Oakland), would have required all public school teachers, including teachers in charter schools, to go through yearly LGBT+ sensitivity training, so they support and affirm students identifying as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and questioning. The training would have also encouraged teachers to refer LGBT+ identifying students to school site (i.e. peer support or affinity clubs) and community resources (LBGT+ organizations and counselors) that will affirm and encourage students to embrace LGBT+ identities.