Two hundred students walk out over trans classmate using girls’ locker room
Hundreds of students have walked out of a high school over a trans girl’s request to use the girls’ locker rooms.
Lila Perry last year came out as trans and for the rest of the school year she was asked to use a unisex changing facility.
However this year, she returned and said she would rather use the female changing rooms. She has lived as female since the age of 13.
The students at Hillsboro High School, Missouri, walked out on Monday, as now 17-year-old Perry was locked in the principal’s office, apparently to protect her.
A school board meeting on the issue also took place, based on the assumption by some parents that Perry is getting special treatment.
For around two hours, the students left the school in order to show their disapproval.
However not all students at Hillsboro felt the same way.
The school’s gay straight alliance also walked out, to show that not all students were opposed to Perry using the locker room that aligns with her gender identity.
Superintendent Aaron D. Cornman, despite not commenting on the issue, handed to reporters a written statement saying the district “respects the rights of all students and appreciates the fact that the students we are educating are willing to stand on their belief system and to support their cause/beliefs through their expression of free speech.”
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The statement went on to say the district accepts students “no matter race, nationality/ethnicity, gender or sexual orientation. We will promote tolerance and acceptance of all students that attend our district while not tolerating bullying/harassing behaviors of any type in any form.”
The students returned to class after two hours.
Speaking to reporters, Perry cited the black civil rights movement, saying: “It wasn’t too long ago white people were saying I don’t feel comfortable sharing a bathroom with a black person and history repeats itself.”
She told KMOV TV: “I wasn’t hurting anyone and I didn’t want to feel segregated out,’ she told KMOV TV.
“I didn’t want to be in the gender neutral bathroom. I am a girl, I shouldn’t be pushed off to another bathroom.”