The student news publication of Libertyville High School

Drops of Ink

The student news publication of Libertyville High School

Drops of Ink

The student news publication of Libertyville High School

Drops of Ink

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Transgender-friendly changes coming to LHS

Photo illustration by Kayla Fiore // Flag photo courtesy of Google Advanced Images
Private changing stalls have been added to locker rooms at LHS in order to accommodate students who prefer more privacy.

With the increase in awareness of the LGBT movement, Libertyville High School will begin preparations to improve policy and accommodations for these students, as well as others who prefer more privacy, including the addition of non-gender specific bathrooms and changing stalls.

Libertyville has already added private changing stalls in the locker rooms earlier in this school year, and next year, they will introduce the addition of non-gendered bathrooms.  The locations for the new bathrooms have not been distinguished by administration yet.  In addition, new showers, which will separate students more while being used, will be added as a result of new health regulations imposed on all schools.  

The private changing stalls have curtains and can be used by students who prefer to change separately.  LHS Principal Dr. Marina Scott is supportive of the school’s new additions to the locker rooms.

“[The private changing rooms] are for all students who would prefer a private place to change,” Dr. Scott noted. “Many students would want private showers and private areas in the locker rooms.”

In addition to facility changes, Libertyville administration and staff will be taking steps towards creating an equal and respectful environment for LGBT students.  According to Dr. Scott, a transgender support task force was set up by the district in order to educate teachers and students on topics related to LGBT students.  

“On the 27th and 28th of April, there is a teacher lunch and learn… it’s going to be about vocabulary, background information, and policies regarding our transgender population,” Dr. Scott stated.  “Also, on May 11 we have a speaker coming in to talk to staff about supporting children in classes.”  

Late last year, a civil rights case broke out in a Palatine High School where one transgender student, who was transitioning from male to female, was denied access to the girls locker room.  According to ABC 7, many people in the District 211 community complained that the transgender student, who was still anatomically male, would make the girls feel threatened and uncomfortable.

The student, however, claimed she was being discriminated against on the basis of her gender.  According to the Chicago Tribune, Town hall meetings were held and debates were sparked over the topic.  Eventually, after the case was taken to court, the court decided to allow the student full access to the girls locker room, but she would only be able to change in private changing stalls within the locker room.

When asked if the new Libertyville changes were related to that case, Dr. Scott replied that LHS was being proactive rather than reactive.  

“Whenever student needs come up in our community…we do our best to meet all of those needs,” Dr. Scott said.  

The current policies in place at Libertyville protect transgender groups just as it protects all students.  No policies in place discriminate against the transgender population in any way. Because of this, the school will not be changing any specific policies regarding transgender and other LGBT students.

However, Dr. Scott said the school will be doing its best to educate the students as well as the staff on how to treat all members of the LGBT community with respect just as all other students should be treated.


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The student news publication of Libertyville High School
Transgender-friendly changes coming to LHS