The problem with blurring gender lines around the use of bathrooms, he and others have said, is the possibility of rambunctious behavior among teenaged boys. They’re likely to storm the girls’ bathroom if given the chance, he said. “When I was in high school, boys did crazy things like that.”
He said the issue arises infrequently, more in some areas of Georgia than others.
But advocates for transgender students believe they are under attack socially, and need the federal government's support.
Eris Sage Lovell, 18, a senior at Cobb County's Walton High who is transgender, said soon after the guidance was released that it could make it easier for transgender students to adjust to school.
Born a boy, she mostly uses the girls restroom, but there’s also a gender non-specific restroom she can use. Lovell said when she was still “largely masculine” a teacher once made her go to boys bathroom because it was closer to the classroom.
“It’s an incredible improvement,” Lovell said of the federal support.
Conservative states had vowed defiance since the Justice Department handed down the guidance.
Gov. Nathan Deal said last week that he would work with other state officials "to protect the interests of Georgia's children from this abuse of federal executive authority." State schools Superintendent Richard Woods said last week that he saw "safety and privacy concerns" with letting students "of different genders" share bathrooms and locker rooms.
But U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch has said “there is no room in our schools for discrimination.”
The lawsuit accuses the Obama administration of “running roughshod over commonsense policies” that protect children. It asks a judge to declare the directive unlawful.