Georgia school district backtracks on transgender student policy

In this May 12, 2016, file photo, signage hangs outside a restroom at 21c Museum Hotel in Durham, N.C. A federal judge approved a legal settlement Tuesday, July 23, 2019 affirming transgender people's right to use restrooms matching their gender identity in many North Carolina public buildings. (AP Photo/Gerry Broome, File)

JASPER, Ga. - A Georgia school district says it won't let transgender students use bathrooms aligning with their gender identity, reversing a previous decision.

The Pickens County school district announced the decision Wednesday, following a heated public meeting Monday night.

The district says it wants to consult with police and others about how to guarantee safety, citing death threats, student harassment and vandalism.

Superintendent Carlton Wilson had earlier said students could use bathrooms that correspond to their gender identities. But Wilson says he received death threats after the announcement and put the policy change on hold until he could talk to the five-member school board.

Wilson has said transgender students can use gender-neutral bathrooms.

A number of federal courts have ruled students should be able to use bathrooms consistent with their gender identities.