Quantcast

Transgender teen confronts school board over graduation - abc27 WHTM

Transgender teen confronts school board over graduation

Posted: Updated:
  • Related LinksMore>>

  • Red Lion: No policy change for transgender student

    Red Lion: No policy change for transgender student

    Monday, May 6 2013 2:06 PM EDT2013-05-06 18:06:55 GMT
    A central Pennsylvania school district will allow a transgender student to wear the cap and gown of his choice at graduation, but will read his female birth name unless it is legally changed before the ceremony.More >>
    A central Pennsylvania school district will allow a transgender student to wear the cap and gown of his choice at graduation, but will read his female birth name unless it is legally changed before the ceremony.More >>
  • ACLU: Pa. school will allow transgender teen at prom

    ACLU: Pa. school will allow transgender teen at prom

    Friday, April 26 2013 3:51 PM EDT2013-04-26 19:51:38 GMT
    A central Pennsylvania school district will allow a transgender student and his girlfriend to attend prom Saturday night, according to the American Civil Liberties Union.More >>
    A central Pennsylvania school district will allow a transgender student and his girlfriend to attend prom Saturday night, according to the American Civil Liberties Union, which had threatened legal action if the couple were barred from attending.More >>
  • ACLU warns Pa. school district over transgender teen

    ACLU warns Pa. school district over transgender teen

    Friday, April 26 2013 3:11 PM EDT2013-04-26 19:11:41 GMT
    The American Civil Liberties Union has warned legal action against a central Pennsylvania school district if a transgender student is barred from attending prom with his girlfriend and the chance to run for prom king.More >>
    The American Civil Liberties Union has warned legal action against a central Pennsylvania school district if a transgender student is barred from attending prom with his girlfriend and the chance to run for prom king.More >>
RED LION, Pa. (WHTM) -

"His name is Issak" read the stickers worn by supporters during Thursday night's school board meeting in Red Lion.

Those who turned out said they did so in hopes of putting a face to the name; a name that the school does not plan to announce at graduation.

Born Sierra Stambaugh, 18-year-old Issak Wolfe made the transition from female to male the summer before his junior year at Red Lion Area High School.

"I know a name means a lot, so I went with what would honor my parents the most," he said.

Wolfe, along with his supporters and a 2,000 person petition, pled for the school to announce his male name at the June 7 graduation ceremony.

"Reading my female name would only hurt me more," he said to the board.

Issak's mom, April, had reached out to the school prior to the meeting.

"It would mean a lot to his family if (they) would read his name at graduation," she said.

The district has said it will allow Wolfe to wear a black cap and gown for boys, as opposed to the yellow cap and gown mandated for girls, but it has told Wolfe that only legal names will be read at graduation.

You have a legal name," school board member Ben Pratt said. "You have a legal name that is on your diploma."

Wolfe said he is getting his name legally changed, but the process cannot be completed in time for graduation. It's a lengthy process that Mechanicsburg senior Caden, born Catelyn, knows all too well.

"In Pennsylvania, it's really hard and costs a lot of money," he said.

The ACLU, which is representing Wolfe, said that it's not about the diploma, but for Wolfe to be recognized for who he is: someone who wants to make a difference.

"I stood up for myself. I stood up for other students in the future, and that's what counts," he said.

The board commended the efforts of Wolfe and his supporters and say they will continue to deliberate privately over the possibility of reading his male name.

Powered by WorldNow