ON AIR NOW

LISTEN NOW

Weather

cloudy-day
91°
Sunny
H 94° L 77°
  • cloudy-day
    91°
    Current Conditions
    Sunny. H 94° L 77°
  • clear-day
    78°
    Morning
    Sunny. H 94° L 77°
  • cloudy-day
    92°
    Afternoon
    Partly Cloudy. H 95° L 77°
LISTEN
PAUSE
ERROR

The latest newscast

00:00 | 00:00

LISTEN
PAUSE
ERROR

The latest traffic report

00:00 | 00:00

LISTEN
PAUSE
ERROR

The latest forecast

00:00 | 00:00

National
Transgender debate spurs bathroom changes in Ohio schools
Close

Transgender debate spurs bathroom changes in Ohio schools

Kettering added a partitions to boys bathrooms over Christmas break.

Transgender debate spurs bathroom changes in Ohio schools

Months after a national debate over how transgender students use school restrooms, a school district just outside of Dayton, Ohio, is making modifications to existing boys' bathrooms at Fairmont High School "to increase privacy for all students."

Like many districts, Kettering City Schools follows last year’s federal directive that calls for students to have access to the bathroom of the gender with which they identify. The directive is being challenged at the federal level.

>> Read more trending stories

Over Christmas break, the district added partitions inside boys' bathrooms to separate the sinks and stalls area — the area a transgender boy would use — from the area that contains a row of four urinals.

"The reason we made this change was to give more privacy to those students using the urinals from people in the restroom who are using the sinks and for those who are finished using the toilet," said Fairmont Principal Tyler Alexander.

School officials tried to dispel rumors, clarifying that they have not constructed special transgender bathrooms, or bathrooms that can be used by all students of either gender. District spokeswoman Kari Basson said no modifications were made to girls’ bathrooms, since they already have stalls only.

Sophpmore student NiNi Denker said Fairmont officials worked with his family this summer after he came out as a transgender boy. Denker said he was told the new partitions were "in case people were uncomfortable with me being in the bathroom." He said it "kinda of sucks" that some students feel the need for a wall between them and him, but he appreciates the district’s move.

"I used to walk all the way down to the nurse’s office to go to the bathroom, and that’s really inconvenient for some of my classes, because Fairmont’s a big school," Denker said. "So it’s nice to just use the regular bathrooms like everyone else."

Basson said Kettering administrators’ guideline is that if any student comes to them with restroom-usage issues, the administrator will develop a plan for that student on an individual basis.

"When student privacy came to the forefront of national discussion some six months ago, the Kettering Schools made the decision to be proactive and to make modifications in our boys’ restrooms at the middle and high schools to protect the privacy rights of all students," Basson said.

Denker confidently explained his switch from a lesbian female to a male identity on social media last summer. He said using the girls bathroom last school year felt wrong, adding that he sometimes got weird looks there because of his appearance.

He said that Fairmont, with about 2,300 students, has only two transgender students that he knows of, and the atmosphere for them is mixed.

"On Twitter, some people are pretty outraged around the school, but there are a lot of folks who are defending them putting up the walls, too," he said. "Most people aren’t so hateful that they feel the need to make aggressive comments at me, but they’re confused. They don’t understand it."

Basson said the district has heard from a handful of concerned parents, most of whom wanted clarification, but not from any students. She said students are expected to behave properly at school, and any student seeing inappropriate behavior regarding restrooms should report it immediately.

Read More
VIEW COMMENTS

There are no comments yet. Be the first to post your thoughts. or Register.

The Latest Headlines You Need To Know

  • The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission confirms they’ve investigating a video on social media showing a group of men dragging a shark behind their boat. Whoever is recording pans over to reveal three men on the boat, laughing as the shark is being dragged at a high rate of speed.  The shark appears to be tied by its tail. (Mobile users click here to see video) Investigators said they don’t know who originally posted the video, where it was shot, or what happened to the shark. A spokesperson for FWC said they take the incident very seriously and are attempting to identify everyone in the video. South Florida sport fisherman Mark Quartiano, also known as “Mark the Shark,” re-posted the video on his Instagram page and condemned it, saying “Force once I may have to agree with Peta.” (Click here to see Instagram post) Anyone with information is urged to contact the FWC’s Wildlife Alert Hotline at 888-404-3922 or Tip@MyFWC.com.  Individuals can choose to remain anonymous.
  • Last year more than 6,000 juveniles were arrested in Orange County. Now the Orange County Sheriff’s Office and community leaders are asking for help to keep kids and teens out of trouble.  Orange County has the highest number of juvenile arrests in the state of Florida and according to the Florida Department of Juvenile Justice many of those arrests come from Pine Hills.  Though agency data show that deputies are expecting that number to go down this year,  Orange County Sheriff’s Office Capt. Angelo Nieves said it will take help.  “The struggle to help youth in the community is an ongoing one, though, so while things are improving, there is still a lot of work to do,” Nieves said.  Community outreach leaders Miles Mulrain and Emory “Zulu Dynasty” James are part of the help needed in the community. Their nonprofit organization Let Your Voice Be Heard, works to keep youth out of trouble.  “We don’t want to see these young people incarcerated and destroying their lives. Certain experiences we’ve had motivate and inspire us to get out,” James said.  However Mulrain and James said that getting the number of arrests down will also take help from the community.  “One of the biggest things to have is more involvement from other groups, more involvement from neighbors and residents,” Mulrain said. “The more hands on deck, the more we can all do.”  Mulrain said with a little help each person can make a positive change.  “It’s up to us to make it happen, and that’s just to show that you don’t need to have everything you think to make a change,” Mulrain said. 
  • Police in Prince William County, Virginia, have rescinded a warrant to arrest former Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Lucky Whitehead. “Upon reviewing the June 22, 2017, arrest of an individual named ‘Rodney Darnell Whitehead, Jr.,’ the police department is confident that the man charged with petit larceny, and who is subsequently being sought on an active warrant for failure to appear in court, is not Lucky Whitehead of the Dallas Cowboys,” said a statement from the Prince William County Police Department. 'The police department regrets the impact these events had on Mr. Whitehead and his family.' >> Read more trending news TMZ reported Monday during the Cowboys’ morning walk-through that the receiver was arrested for shoplifting on June 22 and had a warrant out for his arrest after failing to appear for a July 6 court date. When informed of the matter, Whitehead said he knew nothing of it and the allegations were false. In a press conference, coach Jason Garrett said the Cowboys had just discovered the situation as the walk-through was concluding and that the team would “respond accordingly.” Later that day, the Cowboys released him. When Cowboys chief operating officer Stephen Jones was asked if he had spoken with Whitehead’s agent about the possibility of it being a case of mistaken identity, as was being reported from Whitehead’s camp, Jones said, “I’m not going to comment on that.” Whitehead was the example the Cowboys used to demonstrate accountability after an offseason that has seen defensive end David Irving suspended for a performance-enhancing drug policy violation, linebacker Damien Wilson arrested on charges of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and running back Ezekiel Elliott allegedly involved in a night club incident.
  • Deland police and the Volusia County Sheriff’’s Office are tracking a suspect after after a Tuesday morning bank robbery. No one was hurt and the suspect fled on foot towards Interstate 4, according to DeLand Police.  The suspect entered the PNC Bank at 111 Endicott Way shortly after 10 a.m. and demanded money. He left with an undisclosed amount of cash. Anyone with information is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1-888-277-8477. People may remain anonymous and those with information leading to an arrest could be eligible for a reward.
  • Immigrants who survived a trip inside a big rig in which eight people were found dead in San Antonio this weekend told police as many as 180 to 200 people had been in the trailer at some point during the trip, according to court documents. >> Read more trending news A criminal complaint filed Monday against James Mathew Bradley Jr. also outlines the danger and cost of crossing the Texas-Mexico border illegally, including an expensive river crossing and protection payments to men with alleged ties to the notorious Zetas drug cartel. When authorities found the vehicle on the southwest side of San Antonio on Sunday, there were 39 people inside, including the eight dead. Two more died from their injuries after being taken to area hospitals for treatment. The immigrants, identified only by their initials, told investigators that they had paid thousands of dollars to enter the country. One told authorities he was traveling with seven relatives in a group of 24 people. He said he’d been held in a stash house in Laredo for 11 days before boarding the rig. “He stated when his group arrived at the tractor-trailer, there were already 70 people in the trailer and it was very hot,” the complaint said. Another immigrant told investigators that he was going to pay smugglers $5,500 when he arrived at his final destination in San Antonio. But even before, he was told by a smuggler that that people linked to the Zetas drug cartel would charge 11,000 pesos (about $622) for protection and another 1,500 pesos (about $85) to cross into the United States by raft at a deep section of the river. “The money was collected and his group crossed the river by raft in three trips,” the complaint said. One of the undocumented immigrants told federal investigators that “people had a hole in the trailer wall to provide some ventilation, and they started taking turns breathing from the hole.'f The victims “were very hot to the touch” and the “people were in this trailer without any signs of any type of water,” San Antonio Fire Chief Charles Hood said. Temperatures reached a searing 101 degrees in San Antonio on Saturday and didn’t drop below 90 degrees until after 10 p.m. Authorities said 39 people were in the truck when rescue workers arrived early Sunday. Four of the survivors appeared to be between 10 and 17 years old, ICE acting Director Thomas Homan said. Bradley was charged Monday with transporting immigrants in the U.S. illegally for 'commercial advantage or private financial gain.' The Associated Press reported that the charge could qualify for a death penalty sentence if Bradley is convicted. The Associated Press and the Cox Media Group National Content Desk contributed to this report.