Because of the Trump election, I am worried about just about everyone, from women to LGBTQ people to people of color – but I’m especially worried about children.
Students are just figuring out their identities, looking to the media to figure out who they are and whom it’s okay to be. And if Trump and his cabinet carry out the policies they promised during election season, students are going to get the message that it’s not okay to be anything except straight, white and male.
It’s impossible to know for sure how Trump’s presidency will affect students, but educational professionals have some idea. And it doesn’t look good.
Public education funding will decrease.
A voucher program allows taxpayers to direct money to private schools instead of public schools. Yes, this is as elitist as it sounds. Low-income public schools lose the few precious funds that they have, while expensive private schools get to fatten their coffers. Worse, many private schools are beyond state and federal regulation, so the government can’t intervene to make sure LGBT students are treated equally.
Transgender rights will face a setback.
Title IX of the Constitution forbids discrimination based on sex. In the past few years, Democrats have interpreted this title to include gender identity, mandating that public schools and state colleges let transgender students use the bathrooms and locker rooms of their choice.
The Supreme Court is deliberating this issue. If Trump appoints a conservative justice, this Title IX interpretation will likely be shot down, and transgender students will have a harder time receiving fair treatment.
Research on LGBT students will be restricted.
Obama has directed funding toward researching the treatment and education that LGBT students receive in schools. This research is vital because it shows where the most work needs to be done.Although research has improved in this area, there’s still a lot of work to be done. A lot. Few longitudinal studies have been conducted on LGBT students to track their experiences over time, and most federal data sources include few if any questions about LGBT experiences. When Trump takes office, we can expect this crucial research to decrease.
Although research has improved in this area, there’s still a lot of work to be done. A lot. Few longitudinal studies have been conducted on LGBT students to track their experiences over time, and most federal data sources include few if any questions about LGBT experiences. When Trump takes office, we can expect funding for this crucial research to decrease.
When Trump takes office, we will have to vigilantly watch his economic, foreign and social policies. But we will have to keep a particular eye on our schools, where the most vulnerable young Americans may suffer the most.