Rally held to support Hillsboro transgender student

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HILLSBORO, MO (KTVI) - The conflict between a transgender student in Hillsboro and other students in her school continues. Both supporters of Lila Perry and critics gathered to express their views at a city park.  Neither side appears willing to concede.

The event called, #LiftingUpLila was hosted by the Missouri Gay-Straight Alliance Network.  With this rally, organizers hope to bridge the gap between those who oppose and support her, and educate people on what it means to be transgender. The event wasn't focused on restrooms at all.

"I hope people are educated more, and have a better understanding of what transsexuality is, and I hope they realize that this isn`t an attention stunt." said Lila Perry.

About 100 supporters showed up, holding rainbow umbrellas and signs with phrases like, "Trans lives matter."

Police were on hand in case relations between both points of view escalated. There was some verbal back and forth, and some tried to prevent us from interviewing the other side. Overall, the rally stayed peaceful.

This rally comes after a school board meeting last Thursday, covered exclusively by FOX 2. At that meeting, a large crowd of parents raised concerns about Lila Perry, a transgender female who`s still physically male, using the girls` restroom and locker room.

Questions remain over the legality of letting Lila choose whichever restroom she prefers. When we spoke to her exclusively last week, she stated simply that she wants to fit in with the rest of the girls and that she would never expose herself inappropriately.  Many parents feel having a biological male in the locker room violates their daughters' rights to privacy.

Since last week's school board meeting, students opposed to Lila using female facilities staged a walk out at Hillsboro High School. Lila`s story has since received national attention, and her supporters say they've received death threats.

We`re told several nearby business locked up, in anticipation of this rally.