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Implementation Of California's New Transgender Student Law Still In The Air

SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — Transgender teens will now have access to locker rooms and bathrooms of the gender they identify with after Gov. Jerry Brown signed a bill into law on Monday.

The law doesn't start until Jan. 1, but the big question is how will schools handle it?

Sixteen-year-old Manteca student Ashton Lee let out a scream of excitement after learning Gov. Brown signed a bill the teen had fought for into law.

"I've worked really hard, and everything I've been working for, it happened."

A fight he says to feel normal. Ashton was born Kimberly, but two years ago started transitioning from identifying as a female to a male.

"I know I'm a boy."

The first of its kind, the law will allow transgendered students like Ashton access to sports teams of the gender they identify with, and even access the restrooms—something Ashton says is important.

"I do, because you know, I'm a guy. It doesn't make sense for me to be in the girl's bathroom."

But just how will the law be implemented? Opponents make the case that while the law makes some students comfortable, it may leave others feeling awkward.

"You have someone of the opposite gender coming in and you are supposed to act and pretend they are the same gender, when everyone can see that person is not. It's an invasion of privacy," said Brad Dacus with the Pacific Justice Institute.

None of the local school districts or the state board of education could tell us how it would be rolled out.

"There could be problems with how parents feel, or individuals calling up and complaining to administrators," said Cathy Lee, Ashton's mom, "but I think that this is the case as with any change."

Ashton's mother insists the transition will be important to make sure other students are OK.

As for Ashton, he says he's not worried at all.

"Everyone I talked to today was just ecstatic that I was finally going to be able to be treated the same as everyone else."

The group Save California released a statement saying in part, "Gov. Jerry Brown has again attacked the sensibilities of parents and the innocence of children by signing AB1266 into law to erase natural gender distinctions in government schools."

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