The Transgender Legal Defense and Education Fund (TLDEF) announced a victory for a 12-year-old transgender girl who was excluded from her school just because of who she is. The girl (who is referred to by TLDEF with the pseudonym Emma for identity protection) and her parents asked their school district to transfer her to another school where she could dress in girl's clothes and be called by her correct name, Emma. The school district refused, saying that Emma would “be required to dress as a boy or in gender neutral attire" because her mere presence as a girl in school “would disrupt and interfere with the learning environment.” Following Emma's distress over this unfair decision, her parents decided to home-school her.
In the meantime, TLDEF advocated for Emma after being referred to the case by Trans Youth Family Allies, urging the school district to reconsider its initial decision and noting that it was violating its own non-discrimination policy, as we as federal law and the U.S. Constitution. Eventually, the school district reversed its decision, and this past September Emma returned to class ather new school, wearing clothes she is comfortable in, and being called by her correct name. Emma's parents report that she is doing well in the new school, and TLDEF is continuing to monitor and ensure that the school district upholds its obligations to her.