Trans girl misses graduation ‘after being told to dress like a boy’ US News
A transgender girl in the US is missing out on her graduation because she feels “ashamed and humiliated” at the school’s insistence on dressing like a boy, her lawyer claims.
Harrison Central High School in Gulfport, Mississippi, said the 17-year-old student “qualified to graduate” but reportedly denied her request to wear “socks and shoes like a boy.”
The girl, named only by her initials LB, and her family sued the school in court, but a federal judge did not block the school officials’ decision.
Family attorney Linda Morris of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) Women’s Rights Project called the ruling “as disappointing as it is absurd.”
She said, “Our client is being shamed and humiliated on explicitly discriminatory grounds, and her family is being denied a once-in-a-lifetime milestone in their daughter’s life.”
“No one should be forced to miss their degree because of their gender.”
The ACLU sued the district Thursday on behalf of the student and her parents after Harrison Central Principal Kelly Fuller and District Superintendent Mitchell King told the LB that it had to abide by boys’ dress codes.
Boys graduating are expected to wear white shirts and black pants while girls are expected to wear white dresses, but LB had selected a dress to wear with her cap and gown.
The lawsuit alleges that LB wore dresses to class and extracurricular events throughout high school, including to a prom last year, and that she should not be subjected to discriminatory treatment during graduation.
Mr King told LB’s mother that unless LB wore pants, socks and shoes like a boy, the teenager would not be allowed to attend the graduation ceremony, the lawsuit says.
The school district attorney wrote in court filings Friday that attending a graduation ceremony is voluntary and not a student’s constitutionally protected right.
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