822 F.3d 709 (4th Cir. 2016), 15-2056, G. G. v. Gloucester County School Bd.

Docket Nº:15-2056
Citation:822 F.3d 709
Opinion Judge:FLOYD, Circuit Judge:
Party Name:G. G., by his next friend and mother, Deirdre Grimm, Plaintiff - Appellant, v. GLOUCESTER COUNTY SCHOOL BOARD, Defendant - Appellee. JUDY CHIASSON, Ph. D., School Administrator California; DAVID VANNASDALL, School Administrator California; DIANA K. BRUCE, School Administrator District of Columbia; DENISE PALAZZO, School Administrator Florida; JEREM
Attorney:ARGUED: Joshua A. Block, AMERICAN CIVIL LIBERTIES UNION FOUNDATION, New York, New York, for Appellant. David Patrick Corrigan, HARMAN, CLAYTOR, CORRIGAN & WELLMAN, Richmond, Virginia, for Appellee. ON BRIEF: Rebecca K. Glenberg, Gail Deady, AMERICAN CIVIL LIBERTIES UNION OF VIRGINIA FOUNDATION, I...
Judge Panel:Before NIEMEYER and FLOYD, Circuit Judges, and DAVIS, Senior Circuit Judge. Judge Floyd wrote the opinion, in which Senior Judge Davis joined. Senior Judge Davis wrote a separate concurring opinion. Judge Niemeyer wrote a separate opinion concurring in part and dissenting in part. DAVIS, Senior C...
Case Date:April 19, 2016
Court:United States Courts of Appeals, Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
SUMMARY

After G.G., a transgender boy, began to use the boys’ restrooms with the approval of the school administration, the local school board passed a policy banning G.G. from the boys’ restroom. G.G. filed suit alleging that the school board impermissibly discriminated against him in violation of Title IX, 20 U.S.C. 1681(a), and the Equal Protection Clause of the Constitution. The district court... (see full summary)

 
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Page 709

822 F.3d 709 (4th Cir. 2016)

G. G., by his next friend and mother, Deirdre Grimm, Plaintiff - Appellant,

v.

GLOUCESTER COUNTY SCHOOL BOARD, Defendant - Appellee.

JUDY CHIASSON, Ph. D., School Administrator California; DAVID VANNASDALL, School Administrator California; DIANA K. BRUCE, School Administrator District of Columbia; DENISE PALAZZO, School Administrator Florida; JEREMY MAJESKI, School Administrator Illinois; THOMAS A ABERLI, School Administrator Kentucky; ROBERT BOURGEOIS, School Administrator Massachusetts; MARY DORAN, School Administrator Minnesota; VALERIA SILVA, School Administrator Minnesota; RUDY RUDOLPH, School Administrator Oregon; JOHN O'REILLY, School Administrator New York; LISA LOVE, School Administrator Washington; DYLAN PAULY, School Administrator Wisconsin; SHERIE HOHS, School Administrator Wisconsin; THE NATIONAL WOMEN'S LAW CENTER; LEGAL MOMENTUM; THE ASSOCIATION OF TITLE IV ADMINISTRATORS; EQUAL RIGHTS ADVOCATES; GENDER JUSTICE; THE WOMEN'S LAW PROJECT; LEGAL VOICE; LEGAL AID SOCIETY - EMPLOYMENT LAW CENTER; SOUTHWEST WOMEN'S LAW CENTER; CALIFORNIA WOMEN'S LAW CENTER; THE WORLD PROFESSIONAL ASSOCIATION FOR TRANSGENDER HEALTH; PEDIATRIC ENDOCRINE SOCIETY; CHILD AND ADOLESCENT GENDER CENTER CLINIC AT UCSF BENIOFF CHILDREN'S HOSPITAL; CENTER FOR TRANSYOUTH HEALTH AND DEVELOPMENT AT CHILDREN'S HOSPITAL LOS ANGELES; GENDER & SEX DEVELOPMENT PROGRAM AT ANN & ROBERT H. LURIE CHILDREN'S HOSPITAL OF CHICAGO; FAN FREE CLINIC; WHITMAN-WALKER CLINIC, INC., d/b/a Whitman-Walker Health; GLMA: HEALTH PROFESSIONALS ADVANCING LGBT EQUALITY; TRANSGENDER LAW & POLICY INSTITUTE; GENDER BENDERS; GAY, LESBIAN & STRAIGHT EDUCATION NETWORK; GAY-STRAIGHT ALLIANCE NETWORK; INSIDEOUT; EVIE PRIESTMAN; ROSMY; TIME OUT YOUTH; WE ARE FAMILY; UNITED STATES OF AMERICA; MICHELLE FORCIER, M.D.; NORMAN SPACK, M.D., Amici Supporting Appellant,

STATE OF SOUTH CAROLINA; PAUL R. LEPAGE, In his official capacity as Governor State of Maine; STATE OF ARIZONA; THE FAMILY FOUNDATION OF VIRGINIA; STATE OF MISSISSIPPI; JOHN WALSH; STATE OF WEST VIRGINIA; LORRAINE WALSH; PATRICK L. MCCRORY, In his official capacity as Governor State of North Carolina; MARK FRECHETTE; JUDITH REISMAN, Ph.D.; JON LYNSKY; LIBERTY CENTER FOR CHILD PROTECTION; BRADLY FRIEDLIN; LISA TERRY; LEE TERRY; DONALD CAULDER; WENDY CAULDER; KIM WARD; ALICE MAY; JIM RUTAN; ISSAC RUTAN; DORETHA GUJU; DOCTOR RODNEY AUTRY; PASTOR JAMES LARSEN; DAVID THORNTON; KATHY THORNTON; JOSHUA CUBA; CLAUDIA CLIFTON; ILONA GAMBILL; TIM BYRD; EAGLE FORUM EDUCATION AND LEGAL DEFENSE FUND, Amici Supporting Appellee

No. 15-2056

United States Court of Appeals, Fourth Circuit

April 19, 2016

Argued January 27, 2016.

Appeal from the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, at Newport News. (4:15-cv-00054-RGD-DEM). Robert G. Doumar, Senior District Judge.

ARGUED:

Joshua A. Block, AMERICAN CIVIL LIBERTIES UNION FOUNDATION, New York, New York, for Appellant.

David Patrick Corrigan, HARMAN, CLAYTOR, CORRIGAN & WELLMAN, Richmond, Virginia, for Appellee.

ON BRIEF:

Rebecca K. Glenberg, Gail Deady, AMERICAN CIVIL LIBERTIES UNION OF VIRGINIA FOUNDATION, INC., Richmond, Virginia; Leslie Cooper, AMERICAN CIVIL LIBERTIES UNION FOUNDATION, New York, New York, for Appellant.

Jeremy D. Capps, M. Scott Fisher, Jr., HARMAN, CLAYTOR, CORRIGAN & WELLMAN, Richmond, Virginia, for Appellee.

Cynthia Cook Robertson, Washington, D.C., Narumi Ito, Amy L. Pierce, Los Angeles, California, Alexander P. Hardiman, Shawn P. Thomas, New York, New York, Richard M. Segal, Nathaniel R. Smith, PILLSBURY WINTHROP SHAW PITTMAN LLP, San Diego, California; Tara L. Borelli, Atlanta, Georgia, Kyle A. Palazzolo, LAMBDA LEGAL DEFENSE AND EDUCATION FUND, INC., Chicago, Illinois; Alison Pennington, TRANSGENDER LAW CENTER, Oakland, California, for Amici School Administrators Judy Chiasson, David Vannasdall, Diana K. Bruce, Denise Palazzo, Jeremy Majeski, Thomas A. Aberli, Robert Bourgeois, Mary Doran, Valeria Silva, Rudy Rudolph, John O'Reilly, Lisa Love, Dylan Pauly, and Sherie Hohs.

Suzanne B. Goldberg, Sexuality and Gender Law Clinic, COLUMBIA LAW SCHOOL, New York, New York; Erin E. Buzuvis, WESTERN NEW ENGLAND UNIVERSITY SCHOOL OF LAW, Springfield, Massachusetts, for Amici The National Women's Law Center, Legal Momentum, The Association of Title IX Administrators, Equal Rights Advocates, Gender Justice, The Women's Law Project, Legal Voice, Legal Aid Society-Employment Law Center, Southwest Women's Law Center, and California Women's Law Center.

Jennifer Levi, GAY & LESBIAN ADVOCATES & DEFENDERS, Boston, Massachusetts; Thomas M. Hefferon, Washington, D.C., Mary K. Dulka, New York, New York, Christine Dieter, Jaime A. Santos, GOODWIN PROCTER LLP, Boston, Massachusetts; Shannon Minter, Asaf Orr, NATIONAL CENTER FOR LESBIAN RIGHTS, San Francisco, California, for Amici The World Professional Association for Transgender Health, Pediatric Endocrine Society, Child and Adolescent Gender Center Clinic at UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital, Center for Transyouth Health and Development at Children's Hospital Los Angeles, Gender & Sex Development Program at Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago, Fan Free Clinic, Whitman-Walker Clinic, Inc., GLMA: Health Professionals Advancing LGBT Equality, Transgender Law & Policy Institute, Michelle Forcier, M.D. and Norman Spack, M.D. David Dinielli, Rick Mula, SOUTHERN POVERTY LAW CENTER, Montgomery, Alabama, for Amici Gender Benders, Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network, Gay-Straight Alliance Network, iNSIDEoUT, Evie Priestman, ROSMY, Time Out Youth, and We Are Family.

James Cole, Jr., General Counsel, Francisco Lopez, Vanessa Santos, Michelle Tucker, Attorneys, Office of the General Counsel, UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION, Washington, D.C.; Gregory B. Friel, Deputy Assistant Attorney General, Diana K. Flynn, Sharon M. McGowan, Christine A. Monta, Attorneys, Civil Rights Division, Appellate Section, UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE, Washington, D.C., for Amicus United States of America.

Alan Wilson, Attorney General, Robert D. Cook, Solicitor General, James Emory Smith, Jr., Deputy Solicitor General, OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL OF SOUTH CAROLINA, Columbia, South Carolina, for Amicus State of South Carolina; Mark Brnovich, Attorney General, OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL OF ARIZONA, Phoenix, Arizona, for Amicus State of Arizona; Jim Hood, Attorney General, OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL OF MISSISSIPPI, Jackson, Mississippi, for Amicus State of Mississippi; Patrick Morrisey, Attorney General, OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL OF WEST VIRGINIA, Charleston, West Virginia, for Amicus State of West Virginia; Amicus Paul R. LePage, Governor, State of Maine, Augusta, Maine; Robert C. Stephens, Jr., Jonathan R. Harris, COUNSEL FOR THE GOVERNOR OF NORTH CAROLINA, Raleigh, North Carolina, for Amicus Patrick L. Mccrory, Governor of North Carolina.

Mary E. McAlister, Lynchburg, Virginia, Mathew D. Staver, Anita L. Staver, Horatio G. Mihet, LIBERTY COUNSEL, Orlando, Florida, for Amici Liberty Center for Child Protection and Judith Reisman, PhD. Jeremy D. Tedesco, Scottsdale, Arizona, Jordan Lorence, Washington, D.C., David A. Cortman, J. Matthew Sharp, Rory T. Gray, ALLIANCE DEFENDING FREEDOM, Lawrenceville, Georgia, for Amici The Family Foundation of Virginia, John Walsh, Lorraine Walsh, Mark Frechette, Jon Lynsky, Bradly Friedlin, Lisa Terry, Lee Terry, Donald Caulder, Wendy Caulder, Kim Ward, Alice May, Jim Rutan, Issac Rutan, Doretha Guju, Rodney Autry, James Larsen, David Thornton, Kathy Thornton, Joshua Cuba, Claudia Clifton, Ilona Gambill, and Tim Byrd.

Lawrence J. Joseph, Washington, D.C., for Amicus Eagle Forum Education and Legal Defense Fund.

Before NIEMEYER and FLOYD, Circuit Judges, and DAVIS, Senior Circuit Judge. Judge Floyd wrote the opinion, in which Senior Judge Davis joined. Senior Judge Davis wrote a separate concurring opinion. Judge Niemeyer wrote a separate opinion concurring in part and dissenting in part.

OPINION

FLOYD, Circuit Judge:

G.G., a transgender boy, seeks to use the boys' restrooms at his high school. After G.G. began to use the boys' restrooms with the approval of the school administration, the local school board passed a policy banning G.G. from the boys' restroom. G.G. alleges that the school board impermissibly discriminated against him in violation of Title IX and the Equal Protection Clause of the Constitution. The district court dismissed G.G.'s Title IX claim and denied his request for a preliminary injunction. This appeal followed. Because we conclude the district court did not accord appropriate deference to the relevant Department of Education regulations, we reverse its dismissal of G.G.'s Title IX claim. Because we conclude that the district court used the wrong evidentiary standard in assessing G.G.'s motion for a preliminary injunction, we vacate its denial and remand for consideration under the correct standard. We therefore reverse in part, vacate in part, and remand the case for...

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