Lawsuit Alleges Bullying In Anoka-Hennepin Schools

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — The Anoka-Hennepin School District is being sued again over the alleged bullying of a gay or lesbian student.

Minnesota Public Radio News reports a new lawsuit filed by the National Center for Lesbian Rights says school officials failed to help a 15-year-old student at Jackson Middle School.

The lawsuit claims the teen was being harassed and physically assaulted by fellow students because of her sexual orientation and perceived gender nonconformity.

Executive Director Kate Kendell says the center is also representing five other students in a similar lawsuit and will ask to have the two cases consolidated.

The lawsuit seeks punitive damages and asks that the district to change its policies to prevent harassment on the basis of sexual orientation or gender.

School officials have said the district’s anti-bullying and anti-harassment policies cover sexual orientation.

Comments

One Comment

  1. Sandy says:

    Teachers teach academics, parents teach core values, get it straight – and quite making our schools responsible for raising our children and also while I am at it, providing materials to teach at their own expense because they need to fill in the blanks there too on a mininal salary!!

  2. Nancy Aleshire says:

    Every child has a right to be safe from violence, intimidation and harassment throughout the entire twelve years they attend school. It makes no difference what their skin color or ethnic origin is, or religion or sexual preference, or economic status, or whether they have a disability, or are overweight. School administration needs to take zero tolerance against all forms of harassment because hostile environments affect students ability to learn.

    1. Mike says:

      Perfectly stated Nancy. I have your back on this one……………

    2. Mark from Minnesota Tax Waste says:

      LMAO Nancy, maybe in your world people sing songs around the fire, and that great!

    3. Bill Clinton says:

      What color is the sky in your world Nancy??? You have never seen what goes on in the natural world. Take time and watch young mammals at play. An order is being determined at a very young age. The strong survive. Its part of evolution. Its nature’s way of eliminating the weak from the gene pool. To see where this misguided thinking is leading us one only need watch the movie Idiocracy. Mankind is doomed.

      1. Mallory says:

        oh what and the weak die?? BS. There are ways of preventing this madness but clearly things are not being dealt with like they should have been on the spot.. Put yourself in ones position then say those lame words.. Have the inevitable happen to you or your family and still have that same demented thinking.. Zero tolerance and these bullies will think twice before running thier mouths..i

      2. meow says:

        @Bill

        So you are basically saying it’s OK that children sexually harass each other with cruelty on a day to day basis? Is that your line of evolutionary thinking? Do you go to work and harass your fellow employees with cruelty toward their sexual orientations? Why not? It’s part of our evolutionary process, right?

      3. B from Mpls says:

        @fake Bill Clinton the difference between humans and every other animal is that we have the ability to empathize and reason with each other. No other animal has shown the ability to do both of these.

        Natural selection (other than physical selection, such as a weak heart, etc.) should not affect humans because we have the ability to empathize and reason and realize it is wrong to be ill towards others.

        Your “Animal Planet” comparison is null, I’m afraid.

    4. sabrina says:

      all 12 years? So does that mean they can be harassed during the 13th year?

    5. Mallory says:

      You are right.. My nephew went to Middle School in Coon rapids and was a product of bullying…Perfect teenager..Now he’s a perfect teen in Heaven! These schools need to step the heck up and involve themselves when harassment, violence, intimidation, etc., occurs. These kids are not speaking out because nothing is being done in the first place! EVERY kid deserves to be treated with the same RESPECT as the next..SOMETHING NEEDS TO BE DONE BEFORE THESE KIDS TAKE THINGS INTO THIER OWN HANDS AND THINGS REAALLY GET OUT OF CONTROL!!

      1. meow says:

        Mallory, I’m very sorry to hear about your loss.

  3. See BS says:

    Public Schools have no constitutional authority over human behavior at all. It’s the same as suing McDonalds for not being the police department.

    Lawyers are suppose to get disbarred when the willfully conspire against “Due Process of the Law”.

    Due Process of the law applies to Children too.

  4. Mark from Minnesota Tax Waste says:

    What a joke! Bring the lawsuit on!

  5. Steve says:

    This lawsuit isn’t about equial rights for GLBT students. It’s about preferential treatment for GLBT students. These people think if they sue the district, bullying will not occur. That’s like saying if you offer carrot sticks and whole grain pasta to students at school, it will cure obesity. Anoka-Hennepin has a very strong discipline policy against all forms of harassment/bullying. GLBT is included and even singled out in that policy. Does that mean bullying won’t occur? No, but the teachers and admin have followed up accordingly with all cases of bullying. This lawsuit asks for preferential treatment of GLBT students and that is completely unfair to the rest of the population. Hold strong, Denny Carlson and Anoka-Hennepin!!

    1. Mark from Minnesota Tax Waste says:

      Steve well said

    2. Mallory says:

      If that was the case, the school councelors wouldn’t have taken 3 months just to return a phone call…If that was the case faculty wouldn’t have thrown a fit when grieving students wanted to put Suicide Awareness Info at their schools…REALLY..what school rule is that breaking? Thats called bringing peers together instead of shutting them out…Nice try tho..

    3. B from Mpls says:

      Steve, the idea of the lawsuit isn’t to “cure” the bullying problem. It is to essentially force the teachers and administration into doing their jobs (protecting kids) by creating a very unpleasant financial burden for NOT doing their jobs.

      This is no different than suing a large corporation who ignores problems or takes advantage of workers or customers. In case you haven’t noticed, people tend to act QUICKLY when money is involved…

      1. See BS says:

        It’s liberal Money Laundering that’s all.

        This is why democrats want schools to have more money.

    4. MAD PARENT says:

      steve and all that agreeded with you! my son is not gay we have been in chamolin his whole life and no bullying does not stand here in any school in champlin when he was in 4th grade the same kid gave him a concussion 2 times in a matter of a few weeks apart when the kid got suspended the 2nd time for doing it for a week the day he came back to school he brought to school with him a pocket knife to stab my child my son did get away with a cut on his arm from the knife only then did the school kick him out for the rest of the year just for the new school year to come and even though i was told they would not be in the same classroom in 5th grade they dropped the ball and put my son and this kid in the same classroom told me that we needed to be adults and teach the kids to be friends really! i told them that my son was going to get hurt and 5 kids injured before he gave my son 2 more concussions it shouldnt even been possible for this kid to get at my kid or any other child! now you ask what my kid did to ask for this kid to hurt him nothing! when the ASST.princable asked the kid why he hurt my son? Q. what did the boy do to you? A. nothing Q. DID HE SAY ANYTHING TO YOU? A. no Q. DO YOU HATE HIM? A.no i want to be his friend! then the asst. princeable turned to the kid and says we dont hurt our friends ok thats how you would talk to a 1st or 2nd grader not a kid that is almost 12 years old and my son has had to change his life around he can never play football again or hockey and its not just that kids fault for hurting my son it is the schools fault for letting it happen and i told them it was going to happen before school even started and they didnt care! SO DONT TRY TO TELL PEPOLE THAT THE SCHOOLS HERE IN CHAMPLIN CARE ABOUT KIDS ALL THE CARE ABOUT HOW BIG THERE SCHOOLS ARE AND HOW MANY KIDS THEY CAN FIT INTO THE SCHOOL FOR MONEY! THATS IT! and also on that note the kid that hurt mine is 2nd degree blackbelt and they still didnt care so! so how much does anoka champlin care about kids safety they dont!

  6. meow says:

    Hold on here… let me get this right. It’s not OK for adults to sexually harass each other at work, otherwise people would lose their jobs or get his with a lawsuit… but there are people here making comments basically saying it’s OK if children sexually harass each other? S E R I O U S L Y ???

    Is it OK to simply go to school to try and get an education without being tormented with cruelty? Is that honestly too much to ask? Is it OK to try and get an education without having death threats? Is that too much to ask for the kids these days? You do realize these kids can’t just quit school like quitting a job, right? They are forced to go to school and deal with discrimination and cruelty day after day. There is something we humans have that is called ‘Fight or Flight’ response from our ‘Lizard Brain’ (google these things if you are clueless) and what happens is these kids are forced in a situation and if they can’t fight (most gays are, by nature, peaceful) then they will have a ‘Flight Response from life’ and suicide looks like the way out. Bottom line, … all schools should have a ZERO TOLERANCE POLICY for abuse and cruelty.

  7. Common Cents says:

    Only one thing left to do… DONT ASK, DONT TELL in ALL public schools. And if anyone breaks the “rule”, they’re out… (no pun intended🙂

    1. B from Mpls says:

      Yea, because that will work!😉

  8. jeff says:

    my comments are not making it through for some reason. so i’ll repost a shorter version. bullying does affect education. anyone who says otherwise is too busy looking down there nose and others they presume beneath them. i was tortured for twelve years for being gay. my gpa bit the dust. when i went to college and wasn’t bullied, my gpa was 4.0

    1. jeff says:

      ps. i don’t proof read my comments so bite me on the spelling errors.

  9. Betty says:

    Oh come on, Mallory. If you or your nephew;s mother had ever stepped one foot in the school you would know that suicide prevention signs are posted EVERYWHERE!! There have been speakers who have provided suicide prevention speeches to ALL Anoka-Hennepin students, given ALL Anoka-Hennepin students business-card sized flyers with hotline info for students. Let’s take a closer look at the parents instead of expecting the schools to take care of all of your problems. I would like to go into some of these homes, criticize their parenting, and then sue them for not responding appropriately to their child’s needs. How about some accountability on behalf of parents!!!!! Would you like the school to solve your financial problems too? How about the fact that you may be 40 pounds overweight? Should we fix that too? Give me a break!

    1. jeff says:

      i agree with you betty to an extent. believe me when i tell you gay people are used to being tortured in school. we don’t complain until it starts to get really bad. if i went into the office everytime someone punched me in the gut i’d loose credibility. that said, if there wasn’t a problem here there wouldn’t be any complaints. so are we to trust that the parents will do the right thing? isn’t that what has led us to the point we are at? the only thing that is certain about parents is that they think they are so fantastic, so special, so brilliant that all they want in life is for a carbon copy of them to parrot their same thoughts and beliefs. the parents cannot be trusted to educate their children if they lack empathy and social skills themsleves.

      1. meow says:

        Betty and Jeff… you are BOTH right. Go after the parents of these abusive and dysfunctional kids or have the School simply EXPEL them for a week or a month for being cruel and abusive with sexual harassment. It’s ultimately the parents who are the authority over their kids behaviors. I’ll bet you find some trashy, neglectful and cruel parents … you know, where the kids learn it from. It’s important for the ‘Bully’ to have this behavior corrected and modified early in life otherwise they’ll do it as an adult, then either get fired or get sued or even do jail time for their poor social behaviors and discrimination.

    2. Mallory says:

      NOW there is posters! The students skipped class and sat in front of the lockers just so they could be heard.. YES I am involved in the school. Not that it is any of your business but my nephew was raised in an amazing family.. very close with one another. It is a student councelors JOB to be involved with the students and meet thier needs! HELLO… hense the job description STUDENT COUNCELOR..wow..are you serious right now? Take a step back and imagine yourself in this position. YA CAN’T IT’S UNDESCRIBABLE. What, you think his family hasn’t taken blame or felt like they could have done somethiing? HAD IT BEEN BROUGHT TO OUR ATTENTION THIS COULD HAVE BEEN PREVENTED.. What your pretty much saying without words is that kids should just suck it up and deal with the harassment rather then bring it to authorities attention..CRUEL

  10. Mike says:

    It’s also Michele Bachmann’s district…. abundant CRUELTY and DISCRIMINATION. Did you hear her response to this issue in her own district? It’s beyond words how heartless and bigoted this woman is toward others.

    1. judekat says:

      Not accurate to say this is Bachmann’s district…I live in Champlin and have never had the opportunity on the ballot to giver her my ‘hell no’ vote. Part of it is in Bachmann’s district, part is not. Don’t make her the issue. Also, a school is also a work environment and there are strict harassment rules for places of business. If a teacher were to harass a teacher, it would be dealt with in a legal way. The students should not be exempt from the expectations of a work environment. And parents aren’t with their teens at school. Someone has to have the responsibllity of roping them in when in that environment. That is the responsiblity of the district. Let’s tell it like it really is.

      1. jeff says:

        expound on “roping them in”. i agree with you on some of your statement. i just think that parents should be involved a lot more when it comes to harrasment of any kind. like someone said earlier, the reason that kids are the way they are is because of their parents or lack of. so how does the problem get fixed without their support? of course it goes without saying that, “Someone has to have the responsibllity of roping them in when in that environment. That is the responsiblity of the district.”

  11. A Mpls Resident says:

    In any school there is some type of bullying, if your kids teacher is walking up and down the halls all day trying to ‘STOP’ it, when do you expect them to teach? Im not saying Its okay to bully but seriously teachers cant do everything. I bet the people complaining have NEVER volunteered a minute of their life in their childs school.

    Parents need to talk to their kids, be active parents, talk to the teachers, read their kids facebook pages, Teach them how to deal with stress and other people. Give these kids outlets and backbones, dont waste everyones time suing the school!

  12. MAD PARENT says:

    steve my son is not gay we have been in chamolin his whole life and no bullying does not stand here in any school in champlin when he was in 4th grade the same kid gave him a concussion 2 times in a matter of a few wekks apart when we got suspended the 2 nd time for doing for a week the day he came back to school he brought to school with him a pocket knife to stab my child my son did get away with a cut on his arm from the knife only then did the school kick him out for the rest of the year just for the new school year to come and even though i was told they would not be in the same classroom in 5th grade they dropped the ball and put my son and this kid in the same classroom told me that we needed to be adults and teach the kids to be friends really! i told them that my son was going to get hurt and 5 kids injured before he gave my son 2 more concussions it shouldnt even been possible for this kid to get at my kid now you ask what my kid did to ask for this kid to hurt him nothing! when the ASST.princable asked the kid why he hurt my son? Q. what did the boy do to you? A. nothing Q. DID HE SAY ANYTHING TO YOU? A. nothing Q. DO YOU HATE HIM? A.no i want to be his friend! then the asst. princeable turned to the kid and says we dont hurt our friends ok thats how you would talk to a 1st or 2nd grader not a kid that is almost 12 years old and my son has had to change his life around he can never play football again or hockey and its not just that kids fault for hurting my son it is the schools fault for letting it happen and i told them it was going to happen before school even started and they didnt care! SO DONT TRY TO TELL PEPOLE THAT THE SCHOOLS HERE IN CHAMPLIN CARE ABOUT KIDS ALL THE CARE ABOUT HOW BIG AND HOW MANY KKIDS THEY CAN FIT INTO THE SCHOOL FOR MONEY!

  13. Poetry says:

    Thank you for the auspicious writeup. It actually was once a amusement account it. Glance complex to far brought agreeable from you! By the way, how can we keep up a correspondence?

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