Back-to-school time can be daunting for any child.
For transgender children and their parents, the beginning of a new school year holds challenges the rest of the population may not face.
On September 30, the Esperanza Peace and Justice Center will present its second annual ‘Son Tus Niños También – Trans Kids Back to School’ workshop and presentation.
Organized by the Queer Corazones de Esperanza, the event will feature resource tables from various local organizations, guest speakers, and a panel discussion by parents of trans children. The purpose of the event is to facilitate a conversation between parents, students, and educators on how best to meet the needs of transgender students.
This will be Lori Castillo’s second year on the panel. She plans to discuss some of the issues affecting parents and give an update to last year’s discussion. Speaking to Out In SA, she explained her son, now a sophomore at UTSA, transitioned when he was a senior at Jefferson High School.
“I’m very fortunate that we didn’t deal with a lot of what people have to deal with when it comes to their transgender children and the school not being accepting,” she said. “The principal at Jefferson High School was very understanding. He was very receptive to being educated and trying to help.”
Castillo believes that in today’s changing society sometimes it is parents who may need the most guidance and support.
“I think that adults need to take a step back and realize that when these kids come out as transgender – the kids that they go to school with – they don’t care. It turns into adults who are putting these barriers up and alarms about what’s going to happen if you hang out with a transgender child.”
Other speakers at the event include Emmett Schelling, president of the San Antonio Gender Association, City Councilman Roberto C. Treviño, and Patti Radle, president of the San Antonio Independent School District board of trustees.
Free, 12 p.m. – 3 p.m., Saturday, August 26, Esperanza Peace and Justice Center, 922 San Pedro, (210) 228-0201, esperanzacenter.org.