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Swampscott will hold a forum to answer questions about gender identity

SWAMPSCOTT — Parents are invited to attend a question-and-answer forum on Monday night at Stanley Elementary School, which pertains to the principal’s announcement this week that they are transgender and will present as female.

A question and answer session on gender identity and expression will be held at the school at 6:30 p.m., which will be led by Jeff Perrotti, program director for the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education’s Safe Schools Program for LGBTQ students, according to Superintendent Pamela Angelakis.

Principal Shannon Daniels announced on Tuesday that they identify as both male and female, but will be presenting as female going forward. Daniels prefers to use they/them pronouns.

Daniels plans to fully transition to female, including medically, but said their identity is gender non-binary or gender fluid. Daniels will gradually start dressing, acting and sounding differently as they begin to nurture their new identity, and acknowledged that the transition may not be easy for everyone to understand.

Daniels, 52, said they have struggled with gender identity since elementary school, and did their best to suppress those feelings for more than 40 years, which led to feelings of unhappiness and loneliness. Now, Daniels said they feel calm, peaceful and happy and more effective at their job than ever.

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