Where Do You Go When You Have to Go?
In May 2016, the Obama administration informed public schools “they are obligated to treat transgender students in a way that matches their gender identity, even when records differ or it makes others uncomfortable.” LGBTQ+ activists celebrated this acknowledgment of the importance of gender identity.
On February 22, the Trump administration decided that this was not up to the federal government to decide. “This is an issue best solved at the state and local level,” stated Betsy DeVos, Education Secretary. As online students, we may not have to face these problems; however, some of our fellow American youths do. Therefore, staying well-informed and forming personal opinions on these types of topics can be important. In order to understand this issue, one must look at it from both sides.
Proposed Compromise: Some businesses and schools have begun the concept of gender neutral private bathrooms. These bathrooms could be utilized in all schools to ensure that both cis-gender (people that identify as the same sex that they were born with) and transgender people can feel comfortable in their own schools.However, it is important to note that drastic changes have not yet occurred due to the reversal by the White House. It is now up to the states, cities, and school districts in the U.S. to decide what they believe are the right actions to ensure all students feel safe in their schools.