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03/08/2019

Nonbinary Gender Support in Aeries

Tags: Gender, Preference, Legal

Aeries Software continues to lead the industry in providing advanced data solutions that help schools provide a safe and comfortable learning environment for students.  The 1/30/2019 version of Aeries allows schools to record the Gender Identity of students no matter what the value.  This change is built on top of another industry-leading change available for years in Aeries: the ability to track Students' Preferred Name separate from their Legal Name and only display the Preferred Name throughout Aeries: http://www.aeries.com/blog/legal-vs-preferred-student-names-and-genders In combination, these two features allow a student to be completely known and recognized by the gender and name identity of their choice while still allowing the school to effectively report student data on state and federal reports.

The driving force behind this change was California's SB-179 (the Gender Recognition Act: https://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/billTextClient.xhtml?bill_id=201720180SB179), which was signed into law officially recognizing "nonbinary" as a legal gender in California.  The result is that Aeries SIS now supports tracking and managing student genders beyond the traditional "Male" and "Female" values.  "Nonbinary" (code "N") is now a valid value in Aeries and additional values can be added by Local Education Agencies according to local policies.  The new Student Gender field replaces the old Student Sex field.  Many accommodations were coded into Aeries to allow for backward compatibility of existing custom extract routines and database queries.  

With this change, all reports and pages throughout Aeries have been adjusted to display "Gender" instead of "Sex" with various shortened versions like "Gndr" depending on the space allowed.  At this time, CALPADS does not yet support nonbinary gender values so students with a nonbinary gender need to still have a Legal Gender populated of either M or F.

For more information, please see our latest documentation: https://support.aeries.com/support/solutions/articles/14000096625-gender-overview

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