Round Lake High School adds more unisex bathrooms after transgender student's request
Round Lake High School has created more unisex bathrooms in response to a transgender student's request that more such facilities were needed in the building.
Heather Bennett, spokeswoman for Round Lake Area Unit District 116, said Monday the high school now has six restrooms that are gender neutral. She said Round Lake High has had two, individual unisex bathrooms near the cafeteria since the 2013-14 academic year.
Last week, transgender senior Jonas Valentine, 18, of Round Lake Park, pressed for more unisex washrooms at the school through an online petition he launched on Care2. After Valentine met with a school counselor Friday, officials decided to create the additional four bathrooms for use by anyone regardless of gender, Bennett said.
Valentine said the extra gender-neutral bathrooms were needed because Round Lake High is a large building. Valentine, who came out as transgender male in January, remains in school records as a female named Alicia Macias.
"I'm very grateful that my high school has agreed to put in the gender-neutral bathrooms for current and any future transgender students," Valentine said.
Bennett said the one-person washrooms scattered across the school are marked for unisex use. She said students also may request to use their choice of two male or two female individual restrooms in the administration offices.