D211/Office for Civil Rights Agreement

On November 2, 2015, the federal Office for Civil Rights (OCR) alleged that District 211 was not providing a transgender student with an equal opportunity to benefit from its educational program because the District failed to provide full, unrestricted locker room access. OCR threatened to pursue enforcement action against the District to withhold federal funding unless a resolution was reached within 30 days. The District disagreed with OCR’s allegation because of the simple but important reason that gender is not the same as anatomy. After many weeks of intense discussions and negotiations, the District has now reached a resolution agreement with OCR that stands in stark contrast from their letter of findings.  The agreement protects student privacy and will best serve our total school community.


Agreement between High School District 211 and Office for Civil Rights

Comments by High School District 211 Superintendent Daniel Cates

Email to District 211 Parents

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What actions must the District take as a result of the Resolution Agreement?

The District will take each of the following actions:
– Engage a consultant expert in child and adolescent gender identity.
– Based on the representation of the student who brought the complaint that the student will use private changing stations in the locker room, provide the student access to the locker room facility consistent with the students’ gender identity.
– Provide private changing stations and other privacy alternatives for use by any student.
– If requested, provide a support team to the individual student who brought the complaint.
– Revise the District’s nondiscrimination notice to provide additional information.


  1. Will this Resolution Agreement require specific locker room access for all transgender students in District 211?

No. The Resolution Agreement pertains to one student in District 211 — the student who filed the original complaint with the Office for Civil Rights.


  1. Will this Resolution Agreement require specific locker room access for transgender students in all school districts throughout the state and nation?

No. The Resolution Agreement pertains to one student in District 211 and does not extend to other students in District 211 or to other school districts.


  1. Will transgender students be allowed unrestricted access to the locker room of their identified gender?

No. Any transgender student granted access to the locker room of their identified gender will utilize a private changing station when changing clothes or showering.


  1. When will the access to the locker room by the transgender individual take place and actually begin?

Access will be provided by Friday, January 15, 2016.


  1. What school does the individual student attend?

The District has not identified the school that the individual student attends.


  1. Will the District provide a parent notice if a transgender student is in the locker room with his or her son or daughter?

The District will not single out a transgender student and will not make any special notice to parents or students as to whether a transgender student is scheduled to be in the locker room during a particular period of the school day.


  1. What if individual changing stations have not yet been provided at my District 211 school?

Individual bathroom stalls are available in all locker rooms. The District is in the process of making modifications throughout its locker rooms and shower areas to provide private changing stations as needed.


  1. When travelling to a school outside of District 211, will District 211 be responsible for guaranteeing that all other schools will provide access to the locker room for transgender students?

No. The District will coordinate with other schools hosting events and will attempt to make arrangements for access in the locker room.


  1. The District has reported that no violation of federal law or Title IX took place; does the Resolution Agreement make reference to any violation of the law?

The Resolution Agreement explicitly states that Township High School District 211 admits to no violation of any federal law or regulation.


  1. Has the District identified an expert consultant?

Yes. The District has identified an expert in transgender identity among adolescents.


  1. The Resolution Agreement states that the District must modify an existing notice to state that no discrimination will occur based on a student’s sex. What does this mean?

The District’s existing non-discrimination notice will be slightly modified to provide additional information regarding the District’s nondiscrimination policy. The notice will confirm that the District will not discriminate based on sex, which is completely consistent with the District’s practice. This change is not related to matters of transgender identity.


  1. Will the District lose any federal funding as a result of the Resolution Agreement?

No. The District will retain access and eligibility to receive all of its federal funding without hindrance.


  1. Will the District be engaged in a lengthy legal battle with the Office for Civil Rights?

No. The Resolution Agreement will resolve the dispute and no legal proceedings will take place surrounding this individual’s complaint filed with the Office for Civil Rights.


  1. How long will OCR be involved with the District surrounding this matter?

OCR will receive updates from the District, and both parties anticipate that OCR will continue its monitoring of the information provided by the District until June 2017.

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Palatine, Illinois 60067-7336
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