Gov. Andrew Cuomo slammed the state's education department after a report said it did not protect transgender students from harassment and violence in a letter released by his office yesterday.

In a letter to Acting State Education Commissioner Elisabeth Berlin, Cuomo called the findings of a New York Civil Liberties Union report detailing alleged widespread discrimination throughout the state "completely unacceptable." He said the department had failed to ensure schools were following the five-year-old Dignity for All Students Act.

"This lack of action appears to have resulted in harassment and violence being perpetrated against transgender and gender non-conforming students," he wrote. He ordered the department to respond to the NYCLU's findings and to review how the department follows the law within three weeks.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo slammed the state's education department for not protecting transgender students from harassment and violence in a letter released by his office yesterday.

In a letter to acting state education commissioner Elisabeth Berlin, Cuomo called the findings of a New York Civil Liberties Union report detailing alleged widespread discrimination throughout the state "completely unacceptable." He said the department had failed to ensure schools were following the five-year-old Dignity for All Students Act.

"This lack of action appears to have resulted in harassment and violence being perpetrated against transgender and gender non-conforming students," he wrote. He ordered the department to respond to the NYCLU's findings and review how the department follows the law within three weeks.

Dennis Tompkins, a spokesman for the education department, said it had not yet received Cuomo's letter. He also said the department had requested money last year to help ensure districts complied with the law, but said those funds were not included in Cuomo's budget.

 The department recently sent a draft to advocates of new guidelines for schools to protect transgender students, according to an email from Tompkins, and received comments earlier this month. Final guidelines will be released before September, he said.

 Union NYCLU Executive Director Donna Lieberman called Cuomo's letter "encouraging."

"The state education department has abdicated its responsibilities until now," Lieberman said. "We've been frustrated at their continued failure to do right by transgendered students."

Union NYCLU Executive Director Donna Lieberman called Cuomo's letter "encouraging."

"The state education department has abdicated its responsibilities until now," Lieberman said. "We've been frustrated at their continued failure to do right by transgendered students."

The education department did not return a request for comment on Cuomo's letter yesterday.