A California elementary school has done away with gender-specific bathrooms–in order to protect little kids who don’t fall into male or female on the “gender spectrum,” apparently.
Miraloma Elementary School in San Francisco, California, has announced that Kindergarten and first grade students will no longer have to choose between girls’ or boys’ bathrooms.
It plans to convert the rest of the school’s bathrooms, for older children, to gender-neutral as well–including bathrooms with multiple stalls, which will now be allowed to be occupied by either gender.
California law already allows students to use whichever gender bathroom that they identify with–but Miraloma is, apparently, the first elementary school in California to do away with male or female altogether.
“There’s no need to make them gender-specific anymore… We changed the signs, we changed the way we teach our students that we don’t have boys and girls restrooms, we have restrooms,” said the principal, Sam Bass.
The PTA president, Ellen Schatz, had nothing but high praise for the school’s new rule.
“[Parents] told us they have children who are on the gender spectrum, which means they may have been born biologically with one gender, but they identified with a different gender and that they weren’t comfortable going to the bathroom,” Schatz said.
So far, no parents have complained, according to school officials–and, in some cases, parents have even praised the decision.
For instance, one mom, Jae, who refused to give her last name, is happy that her son–who identifies as a boy, but likes to wear dresses and long hair–can use whichever bathroom he feels like.
But despite the positive reaction in liberal San Francisco, there’s a chance that there may be a growing backlash against schools mixing genders in restrooms in the rest of the country. Last week, a St. Louis high school made headlines when 200 students walked out in protest, after a transgender female student–who still has a male body and wears a wig–was allowed to use the women’s locker room.