by Laurel Duggan
A mother is suing the Edmond School District in Oklahoma after a male student who identifies as transgender used the girls’ bathroom at school and allegedly attacked her daughter, according to the lawsuit.
A 17-year-old male allegedly entered the girls’ bathroom and “severely” attacked and beat the 15-year-old girl at approximately 7:15 a.m. on Oct. 26, according to the lawsuit filed on May 25. The school knew that the male student was biologically male, had made repeated threats of violence against the girl and routinely used the girls’ bathrooms in violation of a state law that requires students to use bathrooms aligned with their sex, the lawsuit alleges.
Days before the alleged attack, police had removed the male student from the girls’ bathroom and searched him for a weapon after another student reported his threats against the girl, but the district never notified the girl’s mother and continued to allow the male student to use the girls’ bathroom, according to the lawsuit.
Republican Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt signed legislation in May 2022 barring males from using female bathrooms in public K-12 schools. Schools in violation of this law can see a 5% cut in funding for the year following the offending year.
The district was unaware that the male student was transgender, since high schools do not require birth certificates for enrollment and the student appeared female, Edmond Public Schools Superintendent Angela Grunewald said in a YouTube video posted in December.
“When the student enrolled, the student enrolled as a female and presented themselves as a female and so had been accepted as a female,” she said. “If a parent comes in and enrolls their child as a certain gender, and when you look at that child by all social norms they look and present themselves as that gender, it’s not something that you would question. Also in high school, birth certificates are not required to start school. So there was no birth certificate in the [student’s] file at the time to verify one way or another.”
She described the alleged assault as a fight between two students and characterized the girl’s injuries as “minor.”
“We had two policies broken at this time,” Grunewald said. “One, we have a policy against fighting. And we have a policy that our school board enacted in August of this school year that says all students must go to the bathroom of their birth gender, and both of those policies were broken. And both of them have consequences.”
The mother is seeking $75,000 in damages for her daughter’s “severe physical and mental injuries, severe physical and mental suffering, and severe emotional distress” along with the costs of attorney’s fees, according to the lawsuit.
The mother’s attorney did not respond to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment, and Edmond Public Schools declined to comment.
– – –
Laurel Duggan is a reporter at Daily Caller News Foundation.
Photo “Women’s Bathroom” by Jeff Barton. CC BY 2.0.