Education Alert – Transgender Law Update

Earlier today, the United States Supreme Court granted a Petition for Certiorari filed by the Gloucester County School District in the case of G.G. v.  Gloucester County School Board.  The Supreme Court has decided to hear argument related to the validity of the United States Department of Education and Department of Justice guidance documents, which informed school districts that they must permit transgender students to utilize all sex based facilities in conformity with their gender identities or risk losing federal funding. In addition, the Supreme Court will also hear argument as to whether or not the definition of “sex” in Title IX includes an individual’s gender identity.

In August, the Supreme Court had intervened in the case to grant a stay to the Gloucester County School District of a Preliminary Injunction Order permitting, Gavin Grimm, a 17-year-old transgender student, to use the boys’ restroom consistent with his gender identity at his high school.  The School District appealed an order of the District Court which permitted G.G. to utilize the restroom of his gender identity.  With the Supreme Court agreeing to hear the case, the stay will remain in place until the case is decided.

Today’s decision has no current binding effect on School Districts in Western Pennsylvania, however it appears that the Court will finally answer the question of whether or not the definition of “sex” in the Federal Title IX regulations encompasses an individual’s gender identity. Our firm will continue to monitor this case and provide updates as new rulings are issued. Contact the Education Law Team at education@mbm-law.net or by calling 412.242.4400 with any questions.