Center Grove school board holds forum on transgender bathroom issue

(WISH Photo)

GREENWOOD, Ind. (WISH) — Center Grove’s school board held a public forum Thursday night about the recommendations by the Obama administration regarding treatment of transgender students.

At the meeting, the school board did not make comments or any decision.

Board members listened to dozens of passionate parents and community members on the issue of allowing open access to bathrooms.

The majority of comments argued against allowing students to use bathrooms designated for the other gender.

The main issue brought up was whether non-transgender people might take advantage of the policy to commit crimes.

“Lord forbid some man follow my daughter into the restroom, they’ll be looking for a lot of janitors to mop this guy up if that happens,” Center Grove parent Jay Hart said.

Hart is strongly against the Department of Justice’s recommendation to allow students to choose a restroom if they identify with the other gender.

He said there’s only one policy he would support.

“If the policy is that men cannot use the ladies restrooms — and I mean men defined by nature, not by man — that should be a policy pretty much across the globe,” he said.

Center Grove student Alex Dixon feels opposite, arguing his district should adopt the president’s transgender student recommendations.

“I was very supportive of President Obama’s decree, and I was happy to see he was doing something about it,” Dixon said.

He was one of the only speakers at the meeting in favor of allowing trans students to choose which bathroom they feel comfortable using.

“I would like to see trans men and trans women be able to go to the bathroom the gender that they identify with,” he said.

Others came to the meeting without a strong opinion.

Robin Roller showed up not to speak, but just to listen and hear what concerns her neighbors have.

“I think most people probably feel like we want to love everybody no matter who they are, but we want to keep our children safe and so I think that’s the bottom line — just keeping our kids safe,” she said.

The school board members will consider any policy changes at a future board meeting, taking all the opinions into consideration, they say.

Currently, the policy for the transgender students at Center Grove High School is to handle the bathroom decision on a case by case basis.

The district issued a statement, saying in part, “Over the next few months, we plan to carefully consider the input we have received from our community as we determine whether any policy adjustments are necessary.”

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