Currently Reading:
One District's Solution to the Transgender Bathroom Dilemma

One District's Solution to the Transgender Bathroom Dilemma

School districts often get caught in the middle of polarizing issues. The matter of transgender students and bathrooms has been one such example, generating a recent spate of lawsuits as opinions clashed and tempers flared.

School districts often get caught in the middle of polarizing issues. The matter of transgender students and bathrooms has been one such example, generating a recent spate of lawsuits as opinions clashed and tempers flared. Amid all this, a Kansas City-area district has come up with what looks like a plausible and fairly simple solution: gender-neutral bathrooms where students of either sex may enter. Inside, individual, lockable stalls with floor-to-ceiling walls provide the students with privacy. Hand washing is done in a common area outside the stalls.

The decision to try out the gender-neutral bathroom concept was made by a committee of district parents and students. So far, the arrangement has worked well, and people are happy with it. Teachers say it makes policing bathrooms easier because they can monitor students from the common sink area. Students, regardless of sex/gender identity, say they feel more secure because of the private stalls. District officials say the concept is going into all new construction and is being retrofit into some existing facilities.

Gender-neutral bathrooms might not be the solution for all schools, but it’s a step in the right direction when people, rather than being combative, come together, collaborate and implement plans that work for their particular schools and kids. We could use more of that.

Terri Thomas

Legal Services

Terri Thomas serves as Director of Legal Services for OPSRC. Ms. Thomas is an attorney practicing exclusively in the area of Oklahoma school law, with a primary focus on rural and smaller school districts. Prior to OPSRC, she served as legal counsel for the Organization of Rural Oklahoma Schools (OROS).

You may also like...

Google Quizzes in Forms are Getting Better

Good news, teachers! Google Quizzes in Google Forms is getting better! As part of the G Suite Apps, Google Forms are fantastic, and they allow you to create all sorts of amazing things like:

Read More
Got Bad News? Don't Keep Parents in the Dark

Keep your parents informed when a situation arises in your district.

Read More
New OCR Guidance on Sexual Misconduct

This past week, the Office for Civil Rights (OCR) issued an interim guidance document on campus sexual misconduct in advance of final rule making on schools’ responsibilities under Title IX to respond to sexual misconduct complaints.

Read More
What Are You Reading?

This past weekend, I was traveling and lost my Kindle, and I am quite sad. Of course, I was in the middle of a good read and will now have to wait to either check the book out from the library or purchase another e-reader.

Read More

Join in on the conversation