Palatine School Officials Vote to Give Transgender Students Unrestricted Access to Locker Rooms

A suburban school district has voted to give transgender students unrestricted access to locker rooms, with the vote coming after hundreds turned out for a tense and emotional debate.

Officials in suburban Palatine approved the change on Thursday night, rejecting calls to postpone action on the measure. Dozens of people on both sides of the discussion chanted and held up signs during the meeting, but ultimately the board voted to approve a change to its policy.

The new policy will give students unrestricted access to locker rooms and bathrooms for the gender they identify with. The school’s first policy on the issue, enacted in 2015, said that transgender students could use their preferred locker rooms, but had to use privacy stalls to change clothes before and after gym class.

The new change drops the mandate that the students must use the stalls, but those changing areas will remain available for those students who choose to use them.

It is unclear when the new policy will go into effect.

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