Sasha Fleischman, "Agender" Teen Set on Fire, Back in School

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Sasha Fleischman returned to school Monday, three weeks after the teen's skirt was set on fire giving way to second- and third-degree burns on the "agender" teen's legs. Jodi Hernandez reports. (Published Monday, Dec 2, 2013)

    Dressed in a gray bow-tie, vest, cap and dark skirt, Sasha Fleischman walked into Berkeley's Maybeck High School on Monday, three weeks after the teen's skirt was set on fire giving way to second- and third-degree burns on the "agender" teen's legs.

    Fleischman, 18, walked quickly, albeit gingerly, into school without speaking to the media outside.

    Sasha Fleischman Set to Return to School

    [BAY] Sasha Fleischman Set to Return to School
    Sasha Fleischman, an 18-year-old high school student in Berkeley, was set to return to school Monday for the first time since a Nov. 4 incident in which the student's skirt was set on fire while aboard an AC transit bus. Christie Smith reports. (Published Monday, Dec 2, 2013)

    Fleischman's mother, Debbie Crandall, who dropped the teen off after a morning doctor's appointment, said: "I'm thrilled. I'm happy they're (sic) back and can get back into the swing of studying and doing homework."

    MORE: Sasha Fleischman Weighs Future as "Agender" Activist

    RAW VIDEO: Sasha Fleischman Interview, Part 1

    [BAY] RAW VIDEO: Sasha Fleischman Interview, Part 1
    For the first time, Sasha Fleischman is talking publicly about being set on fire aboard an AC Transit bus, describing the moments of panic after seeing and feeling the flames. (Published Thursday, Nov 28, 2013)

    Fleischman's friend said Sasha didn't miss a beat at school Monday: The teen even danced the waltz at ballroom dance club.

    Fleischman made national news after Nov. 4, when another teen - 16-year-old Richard Thomas - was charged with setting Fleischman's skirt on fire during an AC Transit bus ride.

    RAW VIDEO: Sasha Fleischman Interview, Part 2

    [BAY] RAW VIDEO: Sasha Fleischman Interview, Part 2
    Sasha Fleischman talks about enduring a terrifying ordeal, the decision whether to continue wearing a skirt, and riding public transit alone. (Published Thursday, Nov 28, 2013)

    Fleischman identifies as "agender," meaning that the teen - born with the name Luke - does not identify as either male or female and prefers to be referred to in the plural, such as "they."

    Thomas, who was charged as an adult, is not homophobic as police contend, his attorney, William DuBois maintains, and set the skirt on fire as a prank, not as a malicious act.

    MORE: Attorney for Teen Accused of Skirt Fire Calls Incident a Prank

    The community - and much of the Bay Area - has shown much support for Fleischman, by raising money for surgeries and marching with rainbow ribbons in the streets. Many have even dressed in skirts to show solidarity for Fleischman's gender choices.

    "It sounds like Sasha is healing well," Maybeck's director, Trevor Cralle, told NBC Bay Area on Monday morning, adding that the outpouring of support for Sasha has made him "overjoyed."

    As for riding the bus, Fleischman has previously told NBC Bay Area that "they" are a little hesitant to do so.

    But his mother said Monday that it "doesn't make sense right now to ride the bus, stamina-wise" as Fleischman's legs are still wrapped in gauze.

    "But eventually they'll do it," she said, "with friends."

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