LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – Following President Obama’s issued guidance on transgender bathrooms in public schools, Gov. Asa Hutchinson on Friday recommended that Arkansas schools ignore his new guidance.
The Obama administration directed public schools to allow transgender students to use bathrooms matching their gender identity.
Although the guidance does not carry the force of law, Justice and Education Department officials have repeatedly made clear that under their interpretation of Title IX, the federal anti-discrimination law in education, schools receiving federal funds may not discriminate based on a student’s sex, including a student’s transgender status.
Hutchinson called the new guidance “offensive, intrusive and totally lacking in common sense.”
“The federal government is stirring the pot and meddling in the local control and administration of our schools,” Hutchinson said.
The governor then recommended that Arkansas schools ignore the new guidance.
“While the letter implies federal money could be withheld, the letter is nothing more than guidance and is not legally binding,” Hutchinson said.