Handbooks for MCPS Students (about this site)

Rights as an MCPS Student - Last updated Jan 23rd, 2023

MCPS' Gender Identity Guidelines give students the right to privacy about their identity, be referred to by their preferred name, and dress in a way that reflects their identity and the gender they identify with in gender-separated places and activities. Overall, the guidelines give you the right to express your identity openly or privately in whatever way you see fit. We encourage you to read the quick reference sheet from MCPS to learn more about your rights as a student in MCPS.

Name Changing - Last updated Dec 21st, 2022

When a person changes their name to align with their gender identity, it's called name changing. If an MCPS student wanted to change their name and gender on certain MCPS documents (such as class rosters on days with substitutes and MAP testing reports), they should fill out a 560-80 Gender Intake Form with their counselor. Unfortunately, this only works on certain school records, but your name change will remain confidential unless you are okay with your parents being aware of your new name.

Students can also install a Chrome Extension called Deadname Remover, which automatically replaces their deadname with their preferred name on any website they open. A deadname is a name someone no longer uses because it doesn't align with their current gender identity.

The College Board also has a preferred name setting in their "My Account" settings. From then on, all communications The College Board sends to you (or your parent/guardian) will use your preferred name. You will still need to use your legal name for any College Board exams you take.

What is Gender X? - Last updated Dec 21st, 2022

"Gender X" is a third option for gender on documents. Along with M for male and F for female, it represents other gender identities, such as non-binary and genderqueer. Gender X is an umbrella term, meaning it doesn’t represent individual gender identities but all gender identities that are not male or female. As of April 11th, 2022, the Gender X marker was made available on U.S. passports, with the state department identifying the term as an "unspecified or another gender identity." Students interested in having Gender X on documents must fill out the MCPS 560-80 Gender Intake Form with their school counselor.

Reporting Homophobia - Last updated Dec 21st, 2022

MCPS has an online form to report bullying and harassment from students on or off school property. While the Bullying, Harassment, or Intimidation Reporting Form is not specifically for reporting homophobia, you can report issues relating to homophobia, transphobia, and attacks on gender expression. You can also fill out a paper copy of this form with any trusted adult at your school.

Being an Ally - Last updated Dec 21st, 2022

A person who supports and accepts LGBTQIA+ people and advocates for equal rights and fair treatment is an ally. Being an ally has a broad definition with many examples like educating yourself, speaking up against homophobia/transphobia, supporting policies or rules to protect against discrimination, and openly showing your support for the LGBTQIA+ community.

LGBTQIA+ Resources - Last updated May 15th, 2023

Most secondary schools in MCPS have active GSAs, which are student clubs aiming to build a safe community for people of the LGBTQ+ community and allies. "GSA" can stand for Gay-Straight Alliance or Gender Sexuality Alliance. Clubs may also be called Rainbow Alliances. You can check your school's club list to find the club at your school!

You can also attend monthly MoCo Pride meetings to connect with a community of advocates for queer safe spaces and inclusivity. Additionally, The Trevor Project provides a confidential hotline and digital chat, which you can call for 24/7 crisis help.

You can find a complete list of local resources here.

Terminology Glossary - Last updated May 15th, 2023

The MoCo Pride website has a section with terms and vocabulary to use when discussing the LGBTQ+ community.