Transgender Students and School Bathrooms
Our report "Transgender Students and School Bathrooms: Frequently Asked Questions" addresses many of the common questions that arise for school leaders at the school and district level as they work to create gender-inclusive school environments. Anticipating and listening to these concerns and providing concrete responses allows school officials to successfully respond to questions that come up in your community.
Endorsed and supported by the American School Counselor Association, the National Association of Elementary School Principals, the National Association of School Psychologists, and the National Association of Secondary School Principals.

Download the FAQs

Joel Baum, Senior Director of Professional Development and Family Services at Gender Spectrum says, “While this may be new to some educators, parents, and students, this document builds on the successful experiences of educators throughout the country who have skillfully implemented gender inclusive policies, including those related to bathrooms. Enacting these policies allows school leaders to support the needs of all students.”

Having support at school and acknowledging a student’s right to use the bathroom consistent with their Gender identity is critical. A negative school experience not only hinders a Transgender student’s academic achievement and growth, but can also interfere with their long-term health and well-being.

  • 75.1% of transgender students feel unsafe at school because of their Gender expression
  • 63.4% of transgender students reported avoiding bathrooms
  • 41% of transgender or gender non-conforming people have attempted suicide.

You can download the document below. We have also developed this version of the report with information specific to independent schools in partnership with the National Association of Independent Schools.

Download the FAQs

Endorsing and Supporting Organizations

American School Counselor Association

Executive Director Richard Wong stated, “The American School Counselor Association believes the current discussions about transgender students are not about restrooms and locker rooms. They are about discrimination. Schools must fight discrimination by teaching students to be tolerant of others and by advocating against policies and practices that create barriers for certain segments of the student population. ASCA is confident the Gender Spectrum resource Transgender Students and School Bathrooms: Frequently Asked Questions will help schools accomplish these goals.” See the Association's statement on "The School Counselor and LGBT Students."

The School Counselor and LGBT Students

National Association of Secondary School Principals

President Michael Allison stated, “Schools leaders must create the conditions in which each student feels comfortable so each can learn at high levels. Given the high rates of harassment of transgender youth, we have to make a particular effort to safeguard them so nothing gets in the way of their learning.” See the NASSP's statement in support of transgender students.

NASSP: Support for the Rights of Transgender Students

National Association of School Psychologists

Director of Educational Practice Mary Beth Klotz (PhD, NCSP) stated, “NASP supports efforts to ensure that schools are safe and inclusive learning environments for all students. The Transgender Students and School Bathrooms Frequently Asked Questions resource provides much needed information to guide educators in the development of inclusive bathroom policies for transgender and gender expansive youth.” See the joint NASP and American Psychological Association "Resolution on Gender and Sexual Orientation Diversity in Children and Adolescents in Schools" below and also see the NASP statement "Safe Schools for Transgender and Gender Diverse Students."

NASP/APA Resolution

National Association of Elementary School Principals

Executive Director Gail Connelly stated, “It is critically important to maintain a positive school culture where all students feel included and respected, regardless of their gender identity or gender expression. Education leaders should use this guide to ensure the safety and well-being of every student in their learning communities.”

Policy Excerpts: Bathrooms and Protection of Transgender Students' Rights

Increasingly school districts and state departments of education have instituted policies and practices that clearly define the rights of transgender students. Click below to see excerpts of language specific to bathroom use from some of these policies.

See Sample Policies

Other Resources

Gender Support Plan

Our Gender Support Plan (GSP) helps you create shared understandings about the ways in which the student’s authentic gender will be accounted for and supported at school. Find out more about the Plan and how to use it in your school.

See the GSP

Schools in Transition

The Gender Spectrum report Schools in Transition: A Guide for Supporting Transgender Students in K-12 Schools offers practical guidance and field-tested tips to parents, educators, administrators, and community members on planning and supporting a transgender student through a transition at school.

Read the Report

More Resources for Educators and Parents

Find resources for educators and parents below.