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Va. Court Tells School to Give Transgender Teen Bathroom Access

A federal judge on Thursday ordered a rural Virginia school board to let a transgender student use the boys' bathroom, as he wished.

The ruling was another legal victory for a high school student, Gavin Grimm, who was born female but identifies as male, has undergone hormone therapy, and has legally changed his name.

Related: Va. Appeals Court Won't Re-Hear Transgender Bathroom Access Case

A federal appeals court ruled earlier this year that public schools must allow transgender students to use the bathrooms that match their gender identity. It was the first such decision of its kind, and the Obama administration cited the ruling in its transgender lawsuit against North Carolina and in a letter to all the nation's schools.

Image: Gavin Grimm
Gavin Grimm on his front porch during an interview at his home in Gloucester, Va., on Aug. 25, 2015. A U.S. appeals court has overturned a policy barring a transgender student from using the boys' restrooms at his Virginia high school. Steve Helber / AP

In April, the appeals court declined to revisit its ruling. The school board has vowed to appeal to the Supreme Court.

Related: Appeals Court Rules on Transgender Bathrooms in Schools Case

But while the case is on appeal, Judge Robert Doumar ordered the school to let the student, referred to in court documents as G.G., use the boys' bathroom.

"This case is only about G.G's access to the boys' restrooms; G.G. has not requested access to the boys' locker rooms," the judge said.

"I am elated to hear that I'll be able to attend my senior year of high school with my full rights restored," Grimm said.

The school board, in Gloucester, a rural part of Virginia on the Chesapeake Bay, originally said Grimm could use a unisex bathroom. But he sued, saying that only worsened his anguish of being transgender.