Transgender teen sues school district over bathroom access

North Carolina
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Stack of books, colorful stationery and education supplies on wooden table in classroom with blackboard in background

SHELBY, N.C. (AP) — A transgender teen in North Carolina says his kidney disease worsened because his high school wouldn’t let him use the boys’ bathroom.

The Shelby Star reports that the student is suing the Cleveland County school district, which is about an hour west of Charlotte.

The student, identified only as “John Doe,” is alleging discrimination.

The lawsuit was filed on Jan. 28.

The student was a female at birth but transitioned to male before his freshman year.

The suit claims that school officials only let him use girls’ restrooms before saying he could use only a separate restroom meant for teachers.

The student claims the restrictions prompted him to avoid using the bathroom as much as he could during the school day.

“John’s kidney function has also been compromised as a result of his lack of access to appropriate restroom facilities,” Dr. Deanna Adkins, a pediatric endocrinologist, said in a court document.

School Board Chairwoman Shearra Miller told the newspaper that the district “made an accommodation for the student that we felt was in the best interest of the student at the time.”

She would not comment further because of the ongoing litigation.

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