Gavin Grimm Wins Federal Case Against Virginia School Board

Gavin Grimm(Photo: ACLU/Scout Tufankjian)

Transgender Universe

By Mila Madison

The U.S. District Court of the Eastern District of Virginia ruled that both Title IX and the U.S. Constitution allow transgender students the right to use restrooms that correspond with their gender identity.

Grimm had spent most of his teenage years fighting for his right to use the boys’ restroom after Gloucester High School barred him from using even thoug he had been without issue for several weeks. The case had made it all the way to the Supreme Court, but was later sent back to the lower federal courts after the Trump administration rescinded federal guidelines that had protected transgender students in early 2017. Because of the high profile of the case, Grimm had become the face of the national fight for transgender student rights.

Grimm, now 19-years-old, said he was moved to tears after finding out via a text message that he had won the case that he had been fighting since he was 15. He graduated from High School in June 2017.

“I feel an incredible sense of relief. After fighting this policy since I was 15 years old, I finally have a court decision saying that what the Gloucester County School Board did to me was wrong and it was against the law,” Grimm said in a statement. “I was determined not to give up because I didn’t want any other student to have to suffer the same experience that I had to go through.”

On Tuesday, a federal court ordered the school board to schedule a settlement conference with Grimm within 30 days.

Judge Arenda L. Wright Allen ruled the school board had violated Grimm’s rights by passing a policy that required students to use bathrooms in accordance with their assigned sex. The school board adopted the policy in response to parents who were angered when they learned that a school principal had allowed Grimm to use the boys’ bathroom. Allen also ruled the policy had violated Title IX, a federal law that prohibits sex discrimination in public schools.

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