Three Wisconsin eighth-grade students have been charged with sexual harassment for not referring to a female classmate as “they/them.”
The Kiel Area School District (KASD), instructs fewer than 4,000 students in Kiel, Wisconsin. District officials allege “mispronouning” constitutes sexual harrassment under the Title IX section of federal education law and have charged three children who referred to a girl using biologically correct pronouns different from her stated preference.
“I received a phone call from the principal over at the elementary school, forewarning me; letting me know that I was going to be receiving an email with sexual harassment allegations against my son,” said Rosemary Rabidoux, a parent of one accused student, according to a “Fox11 News” report. Rabidoux expressed extreme shock from the call and the charge. “I’m thinking, sexual harassment? That’s rape, that’s inappropriate touching, that’s incest,” declared the mystified mother who worried, “What has my son done?”
Her 13-year-old son, Braden, is one of the three eighth-grade students at Kiel Middle School accused of sexual harassment, which she disputes. The mad mother explained the investigating principal told her Braden was being charged with sexual harassment for not using proper pronouns. “I thought it wasn’t real,” Rabidoux said. “I thought this has got to be a gag, a joke — one has nothing to do with the other.”
It is no gag or joke. District officials issued a statement to the local Fox affiliate about the charges. “The KASD prohibits all forms of bullying and harassment in accordance with all laws, including Title IX.”
Rabidoux described an April encounter between two middle school boys and a middle school girl who announced in March she wanted to be addressed using the pronouns “they/them.”
“She had been screaming at one of Braden’s friends to use proper pronouns,” Rabidoux explained, “calling him profanity, and this friend is very soft-spoken, and kind of just sunk down into his chair. Braden finally came up, defending him, saying ‘He doesn’t have to use proper pronouns, it’s his constitutional right to not use, you can’t make him say things.'”
“What the District calls ‘mispronouning’ does not amount to sexual harassment under Title IX as a matter of law,” said WILL attorneys in their letter to the school. “And the District’s conduct infringes on the First Amendment and Due Process rights of the students.”
Middle School Principal Deborah Sixel did not immediately return a Saturday telephone call requesting comment.
Scroll down to leave a comment and share your thoughts.