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Transgender bathrooms an issue for local parents

Posted at 6:26 PM, May 13, 2016
"In the schools it should just be the way it has been. You identify with the bathroom how you're designed," said Freedom High School parent Larry Johnson.
 
"To think that something negative is going to happen. Transgender people go to the bathroom to go use the restroom," said Freedom High School parent Christy Brown. 
 
It's a hot button issue parents at Freedom High School wanted to weigh in on. 
 
"I think they're all out of touch with reality. There's too many predators out here today. It's not like it was when some of us older people were growing up," said Johnson.
 
On Friday the President made it clear he will instruct public school districts nationwide to allow transgender students to use the bathroom they identify with.
 
"I think everybody should be able to use the bathroom they want to use. There's a kid at our school, he wears makeup and everyone makes fun of him. I don't see why they should because he's just trying to be himself," said Freedom High School student Andrew Martin. 
 
Kids like Andrew Martin and his sister say it doesn't make them feel uncomfortable.
 
"If he wants to use the girls bathroom, I think he should be able to," said Martin. 
 
Hillsborough County Schools Superintendent Jeff Eakins says his district has been ahead of the issue for some time working with families to make safe decisions for all students.
 
Now he says they are waiting for more information on how to proceed from the U.S. Department of Education.
 
"We want to make sure there's clarity and that's the first thing that parents really need. Clarity around this issue.We're going to make sure they get the right information," he said.
 
Eakins says they will work directly to educate and train teachers and staff. 
 
One mom believes supporting transgender students is the right thing to do.
 
"You know how hard it is for for a transgender boy or girl to even go into the regular bathroom. They get terrorized on the regular anyway and it's high school. They torment kids in high school," said Brown.