The Morton School Board picks a side in the transgender bathroom debate. The board voted down policy that would require students to use bathrooms based on their biological sex.
But it was not a quick and easy decision.
“Not me nor anybody that I know have felt uncomfortable about the transgender people using the same bathroom as us. I’ve never heard anybody have a problem with it up until this point,” one junior high student said.
“I have two daughters in this district, as I mentioned, and to think that any of you would willfully allow an individual with male genitalia to concurrently utilize the same facilities as them, or any other biologically female students is appalling,” a Morton parent added.
The board heard an hour and a half worth of public comment, and when it was their turn to discuss, they were just as split.
“There’s a reason that we have bathrooms, locker rooms that are segregated by sex,” Board Member Shad Beaty said.
“I just feel like taking a small, minority of students and segregating them when they already are at such risk, when we can ask everyone to make that choice on their own,” Board Member Kelly Scarfe added.
The policy in front of the board would not allow transgender students to use the bathroom or locker room they identify with.
Board member Jeff Schmidgall originally introduced the policy written by the conservation Christian non-profit Alliance Defending Freedom.
“I know people are apprehensive, as we heard tonight, about the policy because of the legal organization who authored. This vote is not about expressing support for the organization who authored it,” Schmidgall said.
But ultimately, the board voted the new policy down 4-3, leaving the administrative procedure in place that goes on a case-by-case basis.
The Supreme Court will take up a similar issue where a school did pass this policy. The justices will hear a case out of Virginia where a transgender male is not allowed to use the men’s restroom at his school.