A Chicago school district is being sued by a transgender student who is seeking the right to use the girls’ locker room without any additional privacy accommodations.
The student is Nova Maday, a senior at Palatine Township High School in District 211 who was born a male but identifies as a female. She’s claiming that the school is discriminating against her by making her change separately from other girls.
Maday and her mother have allegedly been trying to get full access to the girls’ locker room since 2015 (Maday began identifying as a female in 2014).
The school district offered her use of a nurse’s office or a separate, private changing area instead of the boys’ locker room. But those locations are somewhat distant from the gym.
The district agreed to let her use the girls’ locker room for the 2017-18 school year, but with one stipulation — she would have to dress in a “privacy area.” Maday refused on the grounds that none of the other girls were required to do that.
“I just want to be treated like every other girl in our school,” Maday said in an ACLU statement. “Even after the school district agreed to allow another transgender student to use the locker rooms in her school, they have resisted and made things harder for me. I just want to be able to get dressed for P.E. class without having to jump through a bunch of hoops.”
Maday is referring to a 2013 discrimination complaint a student filed against the district over locker room access, which was settled when the district agreed to let the student use a private changing station in the girls’ locker room.
Although that matter was settled with the student, the district got sued from the other side. A group of parents sued the school for allowing the student to use the girls’ locker room.
School officials claim that the Illinois Department of Human Rights has dismissed the matter, and said in a statement that they offer locker room accommodations to any transgender student who requests them.