Transgender student at Virginia high school denied access to both boys' and girls' locker rooms during lock down drill

According to an October 6, 2018 report by Hannah Preston of Newsweek, a male-to-female transgender student at a middle school in Stafford, Virginia was unable to seek shelter inside either of the locker rooms during a lockdown drill. The student was denied access to either the girls' or the boy's locker room, and instead, was asked to sit alone on the outside bleachers. Teachers "were debating which locker room would be appropriate for her." 

A Facebook group, known as Equality Stafford, posted about the incident and called for a protest at an upcoming school board meeting. "During an event that prepares children to survive an attack by actual assailants, she was treated as if she was so much of a danger to peers that she was left exposed and vulnerable," the post read. "We need all of you to come out on October 9th at 6:30 pm to the Stafford County School Board Meeting at 31 Stafford Avenue. We need you to come and lend your voice to the growing cry." 

Sherrie Johnson, Director of Strategic Communication Stafford County Public Schools, released a statement, which says: "Stafford County Public Schools does not comment on individual student incidents to avoid divulging confidential information. However, the new superintendent has requested a review of all protocols and procedures to ensure that all children are treated with dignity and respect. We take such matters very seriously and they will be addressed. The welfare of all students is of the utmost importance for SCPS."

In 2015, the Stafford County School Board voted to prohibit an elementary-aged student from using the restroom associated with their preferred gender. Though the child was able to use the preferred restroom at first, the decision was later reversed due to complaints by parents. 

[Editor's Note: In April 2015, Legal Clips summarized a story from  NBC 4 Washington reporting that the Stafford County School Board voted to prohibit a transgender elementary student from using the restroom associated with the student's self-identified gender.] 

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