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US agencies back transgender teenager in restroom dispute

The Obama administration is arguing that schools can’t prevent transgender students from using the restrooms that correspond with their gender identities without violating federal law.

The U.S. Department of Education and the Department of Justice submitted a friend-of-the-court brief late Wednesday supporting a Virginia teenager who is suing for access to the boys’ restrooms at his high school.

The government’s brief says the Gloucester County School Board’s policy requiring 16-year-old Gavin Grimm to use either the girls’ restrooms or a unisex bathroom constitutes discrimination under a 1972 law that prohibits sex discrimination in education.

The administration’s position is significant because school districts around the country have been wrestling with how to accommodate transgender students while addressing privacy concerns raised by classmates and parents.

A federal judge has sided with the school board. Grimm’s case is now on appeal.

Author: the associated press
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