Gavin Grimm introduced the world to the discrimination transgender youth face at schools

Gavin Grimm, age 18, is a transgender student from Gloucester, Virginia who made national news in 2014 after he demanded the Gloucester School Board allow him to access the men’s rather than women’s bathroom, based on his gender identity.

The case escalated when the school’s board denied Grimm and took an offensive position, adopting a discrimination-based policy following an outpouring of complaints from parents throughout the Gloucester community.

Grimm is still awaiting a district court ruling on his officially filed complaint against the school board’s discrimination. Initially, the case was due to be presented to the U.S. Supreme Court.

The Trump administration rescinded the Title IX outlines protecting transgender students, and the case was downgraded to Grimm’s complaint in the district court.

Despite the setback, Grimm is deciding to use the publicity he garnered for the benefit of students who may find themselves in a similar position.

Grimm advocates school boards taking an active approach to preventing bullying, including starting serious conversations that start with students understanding the gravity of bullying, teasing, or discriminating against fellow students.

Grimm claims his negative experiences being bullied allowed him to have empathy for bullies

Grimm stated that school administrations who approach the problem of bullying and so-called “troublesome” students with an attitude that it is an unfixable problem contribute towards the issue.

Grimm said that being placed in classes due to mental health issues as a result of bullying allowed him to meet a lot of kids who were active bullies or just “bad kids” in general.

He realized that the fact that the school had simply given up on these children, despite their potential and intelligence, increases the issue of bullying towards neglected youth and by them, and that a drastic change must take place.