(The Center Square) – There is a call for more gender, harassment, bullying and Title IX investigations in Wisconsin schools.
The group Fair Wisconsin, which calls itself the leading statewide organization advocating for LGBTQ+ people, on Thursday said local schools need to be supported after what happened with the misgender/sexual harassment investigation into three middle schoolers in Kiel.
“Young people in Wisconsin are facing a spike in antitransgender harassment this spring. Anti-transgender extremists in Kiel have even threatened to bomb schools and libraries following a Title IX investigation into an incident of anti-trans bullying and harassment in a local middle school. These threats come amid a nationwide trend in harmful rhetoric and extremist political attacks on transgender students, from curriculum censorship laws to health care bans to sports participation bans,” the group said in a statement.
Kiel Schools closed their investigation into the three eighth-grade boys last week. The decision came after a week of bomb threats to the local school district and even a death threat case that saw a California man arrested by the FBI.
“We urge our elected officials and school leaders to counter these attacks by enforcing existing comprehensive non-discrimination policies, continuing active investigations into these incidents, and investing in additional support for young people facing discrimination and harassment,” Fair Wisconsin’s Executive Director Megin McDonell said Thursday.
Kiel Schools are not the only school district to deal with anger about questions of gender in their classrooms.
A Waukesha County judge last week allowed a lawsuit from two pairs of parents in Kettle Moraine Schools to move forward over the district’s secret-gender policy, and the Wisconsin Supreme Court is weighing a challenge to Madison School’s policy that allows students to transition at school without letting parents know.
“We can all agree that kids deserve to feel safe at school. Students should be able to focus on learning, without fear of being treated differently, bullied, or even bombed. But right now, anti-trans extremism is putting young people in harm’s way – from school staff perpetuating harmful anti-transgender rhetoric to vigilante extremists threatening violence. These extremists don’t represent the majority of us in Wisconsin who strongly support equal rights and opportunity for everyone, including LGBTQ+ people,” McDonell added.