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You are expected to make significant comments
A significant comment may include any pertinent insight from your current employment about how you fulfill the holding, disagreement with the holding with rationale, etc. You will be expected to compare / contrast with current events. You should use relevant legal terms in your analysis. ( Please see below )
Grimm v. Gloucester County School Board, No. 19-1952 (4th. Cir. 2020).
Facts: At the beginning of his freshman year at Gloucester High School in Virginia, Gavin Grimm came out as a transgender boy. Although Gavin was born a female, from very early in life, he identified as male. He initially tried to hide his male identity thereby causing severe depression and anxiety and as a consequence opted for home schooling. After discussing the issue with his parents and a psychologist, it was decided that he should be treated as male and return to school and hopefully achieve social acceptance as a boy by his peers. By his requests, the school updated its records to reflect Gavin’s new legal name and the use of male pronouns in reference to him. Also, upon his request, the school allowed him to use the boys’ bathroom. He had previously used the girls’ bathroom but his presence invoked negative reactions from girls.
Gavin continued to use the boys’ bathroom, but after several complaints from parents and other students, the school Board instituted a policy requiring transgender students to use a separate single-occupancy unisex bathroom. Among all the students, Gavin was the only one required to use the unisex bathroom. Gavin was informed that if he used the boys’ bathroom, the school planned to discipline him. Gavin felt that if he used the gender-neutral bathroom he would be stigmatized and isolated rather than accepted as a boy. Since he felt uncomfortable using the assigned bathroom at school, he frequently did not urinate while at school, causing multiple urinary tract infections.
Gavin sued the Gloucester County School Board in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, alleging violations of the Equal Protection Clause and Title IX. He moved for a preliminary injunction to allow him to use the boys’ bathroom during the litigation process. The School Board opposed the motion and moved to dismiss the suit. The district court denied his request for injunction but the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals reversed and granted the injunction based on a different interpretation of the law during the Obama presidency.
Issue: Must schools allow transgender students to use bathrooms that align with their gender identities? Is the requirement for transgender individuals to use a gender-neutral bathroom a violation of Title IX’s protection for transgender students? The central issue eventually focused on whether to give deference to the Department of Education’s guidance issued during the Obama presidency which stated that sex discrimination includes preventing transgender students from accessing the bathroom consistent with their gender identity.
Holding: The Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals decided that Gloucester County School Board must allow Gavin to use the boys’ bathroom under Title IX and its regulations. The U.S. Supreme Court granted certiorati in 2016. However, due to different guidance on the interpretation of the regulation during the Trump presidency, the Court decided not to hear the case and vacated and remanded the case back to the Fourth Circuit for further consideration. In 2017, the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia denied the school board’s petition to dismiss the case and in May 2018 ruled that Gavin Grimm had a valid case of gender discrimination and awarded him attorneys’ fees and court expenses. The school board’s appeal was denied by the Fourth Circuit. The U.S. Supreme Court denied certiorari in June 2021 and two months later a settlement was announced that granted Gavin Grimm $1.3 million dollars for legal fees.
Rationale: The Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals had granted Gavin Grimm an injunction based on Obama’s Department of Education’s letter that interpreted Title IX to prohibit discrimination on the basis of gender identity. After that ruling, the U.S. Supreme Court had granted certiorari. However, due to the withdrawal of the Department of Education’s ruling by the Trump administration, the Supreme Court remanded the case back to the Fourth Circuit for further consideration. The Fourth Circuit affirmed the District Court’s ruling, not based on the Department of education’s ruling, but on the 2020 landmark Supreme Court case Bostock v. Clayton County, holding that Title VII’s prohibition of discrimination on the basis of sex also includes discrimination on the basis of sexual discrimination and gender identity. The Fourth Circuit Court’s final ruling was grounded on the Court’s reading of statutory language. The U.S. Supreme Court’s 2021 decision to deny the Gloucester County School Board’s petition for certiorari left standing the Fourth Circuit’s ruling that interpreted Title IX and the Equal Protection Clause of the U.S. Constitution to prohibit discrimination against transgender students.
Important information: This case will serve as precedent when the issue of allowing transgender students use of bathrooms that match their gender identities arises. The Fourth Circuit’s ruling aligns with guidance from the Department of Education under the Biden administration advising that Title IX prohibits gender discrimination. Schools are urged to review and adjust their policies as needed to comply.

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