Data Elements for Students Who Are Transgender
Transgender refers to individuals whose gender identity is different from what is assumed based on their sex assigned at birth, and/or whose gender expression is different from the way certain genders are stereotypically expected to look or behave. This is an umbrella term for a variety of gender identities and expressions with which an individual may identify.
Data Element Information
The following demographic data elements may be altered for students who are transgender:
- Name: First and last name are required and should be submitted as the student’s legal name. A student could originally be documented in the system by creating a WISEid reflecting the previous name, but then once the WISEid has been created, and upon the request of the parent and student, the name could be changed to reflect a different name that aligns with the student’s identity. In these situations, there is no requirement that the student’s name be changed through a court decree (legal name change).
- WISEid may be different from the first and last name stored in a district’s student information system. To ensure that this change appears across all areas (WISEdash, Assessments, ACT), the student’s WISEid must be changed.
- If the student is transferring or previously transferred from a different district, the WISEid system will create a change request in which the previous district must approve. In these situations, please submit a WISEsupport ticket to override the WISEid change approval process prior to making the WISEid change. NOTE: Select “WISEid” in the Application field and for the Description of the Issue, enter “Request override of change request approval.” Never include the student’s name in the WISEsupport ticket.
- Other Name: For purposes of finding possible student matches in the match review process over time and across districts, the original name could be used in the “Other Name” field with permission from the family. The family may choose not to record the original name as a safety measure and to protect the student’s privacy.
- Gender: Gender codes are used for a wide range of public reporting and accountability purposes. The LEA should update the gender marker at the request of the parent and student. Birth certificates may not be requested.
Helpful Details and Use Cases
- The district can proceed with the WISEid student name change by the request from one custodial parent. This is true whether the parents are married, separated, or divorced as long as the parent providing the request has educational decision-making authority for the student.
- Current federal regulations, in defining “parent,” require that when more than one party under the definition qualifies to act as a parent, the biological or adoptive parent attempting to act as the parent must be presumed to be the parent unless that person does not have legal authority to make educational decisions for the child.
- The decision on how to mark the gender of a student who is transgender is a decision that the student and the family makes. Keep in mind that gender identification may be fluid, meaning that students may change how they identify over a period of transition.
- DPI currently collects what is required for federal reporting (male / female) and is investigating expanding the collection options beyond Male and Female.
At the time of the student data snapshot, the WISEdata Portal value will be the value pulled into WISEdash and used in the snapshot collection. If a student’s WISEid name or gender is changed after the snapshot, it will appear correctly in any “current” data view but would appear as it was prior to the snapshot for that school year.
Creating safe and supportive school environments for all youth, including those who identify as Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) is essential for their educational success. For more information, please see DPI’s page on Safe Schools for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Students.