The decision to vacate the case comes after the Trump administration decided to revoke the Obama administration’s guidance which said transgender students were protected in public schools under Title IX sex discrimination laws. The case was to be heard on March 28th. The move likely eliminates any chance of the case being heard by the nation’s highest court this term.
The lower courts are now left to decide whether gender identity discrimination should be treated with the same respect as sex discrimination under federal law. Back in April 2016, Gavin Grimm won his case in the 4th district court against the Gloucester County School District in Virginia after they would not allow him to use the school restrooms that matched his gender identity. The ruling was based on the Obama-Era guidance that has since been removed by President Trump. Shortly after the 4th district ruling, a Federal Judge from Texas issued an injunction that prevented the guidelines from being implemented.
Gavin Grimm (Photo: CNN.com)
“Nothing about today’s action changes the meaning of the law. Title IX and the Constitution protect Gavin and other transgender students from discrimination,” said Joshua Block, senior staff attorney at the ACLU and lead counsel for Grimm. “While we’re disappointed that the Supreme Court will not be hearing Gavin’s case this term, the overwhelming level of support shown for Gavin and trans students by people across the country throughout this process shows that the American people have already moved in the right direction and that the rights of trans people cannot be ignored. This is a detour, not the end of the road, and we’ll continue to fight for Gavin and other transgender people to ensure that they are treated with the dignity and respect they deserve.”
The Gloucester County School Board also issued a statement in response to the Supreme Court’s announcement, “On remand to the lower courts, the Board looks forward to explaining why its commonsense restroom and locker room policy is legal under the Constitution and federal law.”