St. Johns County School Board appeals federal ruling on transgender bathroom case

A local transgender student said he will spend his senior year fighting for his rights.

On Thursday, the St. Johns County School District said it was appealing a ruling by a federal judge that Drew Adams, 17, should be able to use boys' bathrooms. Adams was born a girl but has been living as a boy since 2015.

“It is disappointing to see a school board frankly waste taxpayer resources,” said Omar Gonzalez-Pagan. He went on to say he is disappointed the St. Johns County School District is trying to take away Adams' rights again.

“Why are they seeking to fight this even longer?” Gonzalez-Pagan asked.

For the last year, Gonzalez-Pagan fought  for Adams' right to use the boys' bathrooms.

In July, a federal judge said Adams should be allowed to use the boys' bathrooms, just like any other boy.

In his ruling, the judge said, "The evidence is that Drew Adams poses no threat to the privacy or safety of any of his fellow students. When it comes to his use of the bathroom, the law requires that he be treated like any other boy."

READ | Court document: Findings of fact and conclusions of law | Final Judgment

“I would hope that any school district actually would be standing up for the students civil rights, not fighting them,” Gonzalez-Pagan said.

After the ruling in July, Adams said how excited he was for his senior year.

"I can go into my senior year focusing on college applications and IB testing instead of lawsuits," Adams said.

Now he faces a big distraction outside the classroom. He sent me a statement, which reads in part, “I will continue to stand up for my rights and the rights of others. I am confident that we will prevail.”

After the ruling, Superintendent Tim Forson said in part, “We are disappointed with Judge Corrigan’s decision, but respect the legal process and will abide by the final outcome.”

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