In March, the Texas Senate passed Senate Bill 6 which would require people to use bathrooms in schools, universities, and other governmental buildings that aligned with the gender on their birth certificate. The bill passed after hours of debate. Here are the highlights with respect to public schools:
- The stated purpose of SB 6 is “to provide for the general diffusion of knowledge and an efficient system of public schools, potentially harmful and distracting environments should be barred.”
- “Bathrooms” and “changing facilities” are defined as a place “where a person may be in a state of undress, including a restroom, locker room, changing room, or shower.”
- The bill applies to public bathrooms only.
- The bill states: “A school district or open-enrollment charter school shall require that each multiple-occupancy bathroom or changing facility accessible to students and located in a school or school facility be designated for and used only by persons based on the person’s biological sex.”
- “Biological sex” is defined as the “physical condition of being male or female, which is stated on a person’s birth certificate.”
- Accommodations are allowed, “including a single-occupancy bathroom or changing facility or the controlled use of a faculty bathroom or changing facility, on request due to special circumstances.” However, an accommodation is prohibited if it “allows a person to use a multiple-occupancy bathroom or changing facility accessible to students that is designated for the biological sex opposite to the person’s biological sex.”
Sponsored by Republican Senator Lois Kolkorst, the bill will next be considered by the state’s House of Representatives. Read the text of Senate Bill 6.