In the same week the New Mexico House passed House Bill 7, also known as the Reproductive and Gender-Affirming Health Care Freedom Act, Project Veritas released video and audio from a metro-area school district.

In the six-minute video released by the organization Thursday, they identify Angela Ruiz as a resource teacher in Albuquerque Public Schools’ Student Health and Life Skills Department. During the video, which they say came from an educator within the district, Ruiz can be seen and heard discussing policy regarding gender identity in the APS district.

“Students can use the sex-segregated facility that corresponds with their gender identity they assert at school, so how they identify at school determines which restroom they choose to use,” Project Veritas quotes Ruiz as saying. “Students do not need a GSP (gender support plan) to access a bathroom or locker room or to request specific names.”

The video also contains audio in which Ruiz said her department is funded by a six-year CDC grant and that it oversees safe zones throughout the district, including in elementary schools.

“This program, the safe zone program, is something that my department runs,” Ruiz says in the Project Veritas video. “And what we do is we provide training to all of the staff on how to support LGBTQ+ students. So we go in, we give explicit steps on how to support those students, what to do, how to intervene in negative language, how to do gender support plans, who to contact, all of that stuff.

“In middle schools, you generally see it [safe zones] at lunch. It’s not always safe for them to go after school because, generally, there’s permission slips that are involved and sometimes families won’t sign it,” she continues. “APS staff are expected to use names and pronouns of students in accordance with their gender identity they assert at school.”

Refusal for teachers to do this, she said, is a Title IX violation.

The GSPs, she adds, only need the input of three people: the administrator the student reaches out to, the student themselves and the Title IX director.

A teacher follows up by asking about parent input when creating a GSP. Ruiz appears to confirm that family input is not needed, and that plans made without family input is simply called a “conversation.”

“There are some things that you cannot disclose to anyone, even if you think it would be helpful,” the video shows Ruiz saying. “So if a student comes to you and they disclose that they’re a member of the LGBTQ+ community, or they disclose to you, ‘Hey, I’m transgender,’ or they come to you and say, ‘Yeah, my legal name is Michael but I go by Michelle,’ or they come to you and say, ‘Can you please use they/them pronouns?’ Any of these four pieces of information, you cannot tell anyone.

“What’s really, really important is before you call home, find out how the student is addressed at home,” the audio continues. “Sadly, we have students that are not able to be out at home. They’re not safe to be out at home. So when we’re calling home, we want to make sure we’re using what’s in Synergy unless the student tells you otherwise.”

The policy at Rio Rancho Public Schools is different.

Beth Pendergrass, the district’s chief communications officer, said that in cases of a student changing their gender identity, the RRPS process is parent-driven.

“Both the parent or guardian and the student meet with a team at their school to develop an Individual Support Plan,” she wrote. “The purpose of an Individual Support Plan meeting is to consider and develop a written plan that addresses a safe and non-discriminatory protocol for the student’s access to programs, facilities and the district’s record keeping system for the student’s educational records.”

Searches for Ruiz on the APS online directory Friday afternoon led to blank spots, and the district has not responded to a request for comment.

Tuesday’s advancement of HB7, which would prohibit cities and public schools in New Mexico from interfering with a person’s access to abortion or gender-affirming care, won approval on an 38-31 to vote, also made waves at the Sandoval County Commission meeting Wednesday night with Commissioners Dave Heil and Jay Block speaking out against it.

The measure now moves to the state Senate.