Grimm v. Gloucester County School Board, 082620 FED4, 19-1952

Docket Nº:19-1952
Opinion Judge:FLOYD, CIRCUIT JUDGE
Party Name:GAVIN GRIMM, Plaintiff-Appellee, v. GLOUCESTER COUNTY SCHOOL BOARD, Defendant-Appellant. NAACP LEGAL DEFENSE AND EDUCATION FUND, INC.; INTERACT: ADVOCATES FOR INTERSEX YOUTH; FAIRFAX COUNTY SCHOOL BOARD; ALEXANDRIA CITY SCHOOL BOARD; ARLINGTON SCHOOL BOARD; FALLS CHURCH CITY SCHOOL BOARD; TREVOR PROJECT; NATIONAL PARENT TEACHER ASSOCIATION; GLS...
Attorney:David Patrick Corrigan, HARMAN CLAYTON CORRIGAN & WELLMAN, Richmond, Virginia, for Appellant. Joshua A. Block, AMERICAN CIVIL LIBERTIES UNION FOUNDATION, New York, New York, for Appellee. Jeremy D. Capps, M. Scott Fisher, Jr., George A. Somerville, HARMAN CLAYTOR CORRIGAN & WELLMAN, Richmond, Vir...
Judge Panel:Before NIEMEYER, WYNN, and FLOYD, Circuit Judges. WYNN, Circuit Judge, concurring: NIEMEYER, Circuit Judge, dissenting:
Case Date:August 26, 2020
Court:United States Courts of Appeals, Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
 
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GAVIN GRIMM, Plaintiff-Appellee,

v.

GLOUCESTER COUNTY SCHOOL BOARD, Defendant-Appellant.

NAACP LEGAL DEFENSE AND EDUCATION FUND, INC.; INTERACT: ADVOCATES FOR INTERSEX YOUTH; FAIRFAX COUNTY SCHOOL BOARD; ALEXANDRIA CITY SCHOOL BOARD; ARLINGTON SCHOOL BOARD; FALLS CHURCH CITY SCHOOL BOARD; TREVOR PROJECT; NATIONAL PARENT TEACHER ASSOCIATION; GLSEN; AMERICAN SCHOOL COUNSELOR ASSOCIATION; NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF SCHOOL PSYCHOLOGISTS; PFLAG, INC.; TRANS YOUTH EQUALITY FOUNDATION; GENDER SPECTRUM; GENDER DIVERSITY; CAMPAIGN FOR SOUTHERN EQUALITY; HE SHE ZE AND WE; SIDE BY SIDE; GENDER BENDERS; AMERICAN ACADEMY OF PEDIATRICS; AMERICAN ACADEMY OF CHILD AND ADOLESCENT PSYCHIATRY; AMERICAN ACADEMY OF PHYSICIAN ASSISTANTS; AMERICAN COLLEGE OF PHYSICIANS; AMERICAN MEDICAL ASSOCIATION; AMERICAN MEDICAL STUDENTS ASSOCIATION; AMERICAN MEDICAL WOMEN'S ASSOCIATION; AMERICAN NURSES ASSOCIATION; AMERICAN PSYCHIATRIC ASSOCIATION; AMERICAN PUBLIC HEALTH ASSOCIATION; ASSOCIATION OF MEDICAL SCHOOL PEDIATRIC DEPARTMENT CHAIRS; GLMA: HEALTH PROFESSIONALS ADVANCING LGBT EQUALITY; LBGT PA CAUCUS; PEDIATRIC ENDOCRINE SOCIETY; SOCIETY FOR ADOLESCENT HEALTH AND MEDICINE; SOCIETY FOR PHYSICIAN ASSISTANTS IN PEDIATRICS; WORLD PROFESSIONAL ASSOCIATION FOR TRANSGENDER HEALTH; LEAH FREGULIA; ADELITA GRIJALVA; DAVID VANNASDALL, Ed.D.; LOS ANGELES UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT; JUDY CHIASSON, Ph. D.; MONICA GARCIA; WENDY RANCK-BUHR, Ph. D.; SAN DIEGO UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT; ELDRIDGE GREER, Ph. D.; GREGORY R. MEECE; FRANKLIN NEWTON, Ed.D.; DIANA K. BRUCE; DANIEL F. GOHL; DENISE PALAZZO; JEREMY MAJESKI; KAREN CARNEY; SARAH SHIRK; BETH BAZER, Ed.D.; PAULA INSLEY MILLER, Ed.D.; THOMAS WEBER; THOMAS A. ABERLI, Ed.D.; HOWARD COLTER; MATTHEW HANEY; KEN KUNIN; ROBERT A. MOTLEY; CATHERINE FROM; ROGER BOURGEOIS; CYNDY TAYMORE; LIZBETH DESELM; DYLAN PAULY; DELOIS COOKE SPRYSZAK; CRAIG MCCALLA; MARY DORAN; WASHOE COUNTY SCHOOL DISTRICT; JAMES C. MORSE, SR., Ed.D.; THE SCHOOL DISTRICT OF SOUTH ORANGE AND MAPLEWOOD; THOMAS SMITH, Ed.D.; CRAIG VAUGHN; ARTHUR DIBENEDETTO; LAS CRUCES PUBLIC SCHOOLS; WENDI MILLER-TOMLINSON, M.D., Ph.D.; JOHN O'REILLY; HEIDI CARTER; ANTHONY GATTO; ERIC DOSS; PEYTON CHAPMAN; ZIAD W. MUNSON, Ph. D.; RACHEL SANTA, Ed.D.; KELLIE M. HARGIS, Ed.D.; LINDSEY POLLOCK, Ed.D.; BRIAN SCHAFFER; THE WASHINGTON CENTRAL UNIFIED UNION SCHOOL DISTRICT; WILL BAKER; LISA LOVE; SHERIE HOHS; SHERRI CYRA; LAURA H. LOVE, Ed.D.; JILL GURTNER; MONICA SCHOMMER; BRYAN DAVIS, Ph. D.; PARU SHAH, Ph. D.; TIM KENNEY; STATE OF NEW YORK; STATE OF WASHINGTON; STATE OF CALIFORNIA; STATE OF COLORADO; STATE OF CONNECTICUT; STATE OF DELAWARE; STATE OF HAWAII; STATE OF ILLINOIS; STATE OF MAINE; STATE OF MARYLAND; STATE OF MASSACHUSETTS; STATE OF MICHIGAN; STATE OF MINNESOTA; STATE OF NEVADA; STATE OF NEW JERSEY; STATE OF NEW MEXICO; STATE OF NORTH CAROLINA; STATE OF OREGON; COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA; STATE OF RHODE ISLAND; STATE OF VERMONT; COMMONWEALTH OF VIRGINIA; DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA, Amici Supporting Appellee.

No. 19-1952

United States Court of Appeals, Fourth Circuit

August 26, 2020

Argued: May 26, 2020

Appeal from the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, at Newport News. Arenda L. Wright Allen, District Judge. (4:15-cv-00054-AWA-RJK)

ARGUED:

David Patrick Corrigan, HARMAN CLAYTON CORRIGAN & WELLMAN, Richmond, Virginia, for Appellant.

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

ON BRIEF:

Jeremy D. Capps, M. Scott Fisher, Jr., George A. Somerville, HARMAN CLAYTOR CORRIGAN & WELLMAN, Richmond, Virginia, for Appellant.

Eden B. Heilman, Jennifer Safstrom, Nicole Tortoriello, AMERICAN CIVIL LIBERTIES UNION OF VIRGINIA FOUNDATION, INC., Richmond, Virginia; Leslie Cooper, AMERICAN CIVIL LIBERTIES UNION FOUNDATION, New York, New York, for Appellee.

Sherrilyn A. Ifill, President and Director-Counsel, Janai S. Nelson, Samual Spital, Jin Hee Lee, Kevin E. Jason, New York, New York, Christopher Kemmitt, NAACP LEGAL DEFENSE & EDUCATIONAL FUND, INC., Washington, D.C.; Suzanne B. Goldberg, COLUMBIA LAW SCHOOL SEXUALITY AND GENDER LAW CLINIC, New York, New York, for Amicus NAACP Legal Defense & Educational Fund, Inc. Aron Fischer, Jonah M. Knobler, PATTERSON BELKNAP WEBB & TYLER LLP, New York, New York, for Amicus interACT: Advocates for Intersex Youth.

Stuart A. Raphael, Sona Rewari, Washington, D.C., Trevor S. Cox, HUNTON ANDREWS KURTH LLP, Richmond, Virginia, for Amici Fairfax County School Board and Other Virginia School Boards. Howard S. Hogan, Washington, D.C., Abbey Hudson, Corey G. Singer, Keshia Afia Bonner, GIBSON, DUNN & CRUTCHER LLP, Los Angeles, California, for Amicus The Trevor Project. Wesley R. Powell, Mary Eaton, WILLKIE FARR & GALLAGHER LLP, New York, New York, for Amici The National PTA, GLSEN, American School Counselor Association, and National Association of School Psychologists.

Asaf Orr, Shannon Minter, NATIONAL CENTER FOR LESBIAN RIGHTS, San Francisco, California; Lynly Egyes, TRANSGENDER LAW CENTER, Oakland, California; Maureen P. Alger, John C. Dwyer, Palo Alto, California, Kyle Wong, Audrey J. Mott-Smith, COOLEY LLP, San Francisco, California, for Amici PFLAG, Inc, Trans Youth Equality Foundation, Gender Spectrum, Gender Diversity, Campaign for Southern Equality, He She Ze and We, Side by Side, and Gender Benders.

Aaron M. Panner, KELLOGG, HANSEN, TODD, FIGEL & FREDERICK, PLLC, Washington, D.C.; Devi M. Rao, Washington, D.C., Ethan C. Wong, JENNIFER & BLOCK LLP, New York, New York, for Amici Medical, Public Health, and Mental Health Organizations.

Richard M. Segal, San Diego, California, Cynthia Cook Robertson, Robert C.K. Boyd, William C. Miller, PILLSBURY WINTHROP SHAW PITTMAN LLP, Washington, D.C.; Tara L. Borelli, LAMBDA LEGAL DEFENSE AND EDUCATION FUND, INC., Atlanta, Georgia, for Amici School Administrators from Twenty-Nine States and the District of Columbia.

Robert W. Ferguson, Attorney General, Noah G. Purcell, Solicitor General, Alan D. Copsey, Deputy Solicitor General, OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL OF WASHINGTON, Olympia, Washington, for Amicus State of Washington.

Letitia James, Attorney General, Barbara D. Underwood, Solicitor General, Anisha S. Dasgupta, Deputy Solicitor General, Linda Fang, Assistant Solicitor General, OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL OF NEW YORK, New York, New York, for Amicus State of New York.

Xavier Becerra, Attorney General, OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL, Sacramento, California, for Amicus State of California. Phil Weiser, Attorney General, OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL OF COLORADO, Denver, Colorado, for Amicus State of California. William Tong, Attorney General, OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL OF CONNECTICUT, Hartford, Connecticut, for Amicus State of Connecticut. Kathy Jennings, Attorney General, DELAWARE DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE, Wilmington, Delaware, for Amicus State of Delaware. Clare E. Connors, Attorney General, OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL OF HAWAII, Honolulu, Hawaii, for Amicus State of Hawaii. Kwame Raoul, Attorney General, OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL OF ILLINOIS, Chicago, Illinois, for Amicus State of Illinois. Aaron M. Frey, Attorney General, OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL OF MAINE, Augusta, Maine, for Amicus State of Maine. Brian E. Frosh, Attorney General, OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL OF MARYLAND, Baltimore, Maryland, for Amicus State of Maryland. Maura Healey, Attorney General, OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL OF MASSACHUSETTS, Boston, Massachusetts, for Amicus Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

Dana Nessel, Attorney General, OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL, Lansing, Michigan, for Amicus State of Michigan. Keith Ellison, Attorney General, OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL OF MINNESOTA, St. Paul, Minnesota, for Amicus State of Minnesota.

Aaron D. Ford, Attorney General, OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL OF NEVADA, Carson City, Nevada, for Amicus State of Nevada.

Gubrir S. Grewal, Attorney General, OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL OF NEW JERSEY, Trenton, New Jersey, for Amicus State of New Jersey.

Hector H. Balderas, Attorney General, OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL OF NEW MEXICO, Santa Fe, New Mexico, for Amicus State of New Mexico. Joshua H. Stein, Attorney General, OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL OF NORTH CAROLINA, Raleigh, North Carolina, for Amicus State of North Carolina. Ellen F. Rosenblum, Attorney General, OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL OF OREGON, Salem, Oregon, for Amicus State of Oregon.

Josh Shapiro, Attorney General, OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL OF PENNSYLVANIA, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, for Amicus Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

Peter F. Neronha, Attorney General, OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL OF RHODE ISLAND, Providence, Rhode Island, for Amicus State of Rhode Island.

Thomas J. Donovan, Jr., Attorney General, OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL OF VERMONT, Montpelier, Vermont, for Amicus State of Vermont.

Mark R. Herring, Attorney General, OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL OF VIRGINIA, Richmond, Virginia, for Amicus Commonwealth of Virginia.

Karl A. Racine, Attorney General, OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL FOR THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA, Washington, D.C., for Amicus District of Columbia.

Before NIEMEYER, WYNN, and FLOYD, Circuit Judges.

FLOYD, CIRCUIT JUDGE

At the heart of this appeal is whether equal protection and Title IX can protect transgender students from school bathroom policies that prohibit them from affirming their gender. We join a growing consensus of courts in holding that the answer is resoundingly yes.

Now a twenty-year-old college student, Plaintiff-Appellee Gavin Grimm has spent the past five years litigating against the Gloucester County School Board's refusal to allow him as a transgender male to use the boys restrooms at Gloucester County High School. Grimm's birth-assigned sex, or so-called "biological sex," is...

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