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Eau Claire Is Latest School District To Consider Making Transgender A Protected Class

Board Member Says Idea Is To Create A Safe, Supportive Environment

transgender bathroom sign
Peas (CC-BY-NC-ND)  

Officials in the Eau Claire Area School District are considering designating transgender students as a special protected class.

Eau Claire School Board committee members have been discussing accommodations for transgendered students since May, and now Board Member Joe Luginbill said he’ll fight to get policy changes adopted by the board.

“So, I’ll be advocating to get those changes as soon as practicable put on the agenda, which basically designates transgender students as a protected class,” he said. “And then, the next step from there is the implementation of that.”

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Luginbill said he’s pushing to provide gender neutral bathrooms and changing areas.

“(It’s) really just about making sure that those students, like all of our students in the school system, their needs are properly met. Making sure that they are in a safe environment and making sure they are in a supportive environment,” Luginbill said.

Madison, Janesville, Shorewood and Menasha schools have made similar policy changes.

A recently introduced bill in the state Legislature requiring students to use most school restroom facilities based on their physical gender is unlikely to pass this session.