Protecting the Rights of All Students in LAUSD

I started the organization Parents with Exceptional Kids after I had my son. Through this non-profit, I am raising awareness and educating parents about autism, as well as related developmental disabilities . I have three children, two of them are on the autism spectrum. I started Parents with Exceptional Kids after I realized the severity of my son’s autism.

I am also a parent advocate and am very involved in the school district. I spoke at the August 21st Los Angeles Unified School District board meeting because I think it’s important for all students to have fair treatment and equal access to education.

My daughter, who has aspergers, came out to us when she was 9 years old. She started dating her first girlfriend in 9th grade. The school administration and some teachers had a problem with this and complained that our daughter’s relationship was “weird behavior”. This weird behavior included what couples normally do in a relationship, like holding hands and eating lunch together. The staff at the school would ask invasive and personal questions about my daughter’s relationship with her girlfriends. They wanted to know who the guy was in the relationship. My daughter was out to her family but her girlfriend was not, making this relationship even more difficult at  times. My daughter was coming home crying. She has sensory disorder and anxiety disorder and would often have meltdowns at home right after school. I felt this was affecting her ability to learn.

I decided to contact the ACLU, the Latinos Equality Alliance, and Ref Rodriguez. I filed a formal complaint regarding the school. The school concluded that nothing wrong had occurred. They thought that the comments by teachers and staff were fine.

My daughter had a problem with this. She felt like the school was basically calling them liars.

As part of the resolution for the complaint, we asked the school provide LGBTQ sensitivity training to staff and students. They still haven’t provided training for their staff members. I have even asked the LGBT Center to contact the school, but the school claims not to need the training.

I arrived at 3 AM so I would have an opportunity to speak to the district board. I need the school continue the resolution that was approved. I need to know that the new election will provide continuity with the previous leadership. I want every school to follow the law.

What do you think?

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Gloria Rodriguez

Gloria Rodriguez

Gloria Rodriguez is a parent and advocate in the city of Los Angeles. She started an organization named Parents with Exceptional Kids through which she raises awareness and educates parents about autism and all related developmental disabilities.

Gloria Rodriguez

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