DECATUR, Ga. — The U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights is investigating a complaint filed by the parent of a Georgia kindergartner after the young girl told her mother that she was sexually assaulted in the restroom by her classmate, a boy who identifies as “gender fluid.”
The case is being represented by the religious liberties organization Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF), and involves a five-year-old girl who attends Oakhurst Elementary School in Decatur.
According to the complaint, last November, the child asked her teacher for permission to use the restroom. As she was finishing up in her stall, she was met by a male classmate who allegedly pushed her against the stall and sexually assaulted her. The girl reportedly told her mother about the incident that evening.
“I asked her if she told anyone about it,” mother Pascha Thomas outlined in a video released by ADF. “She started crying and said, ‘No mama, I didn’t tell nobody. But, I didn’t ask him to come in the bathroom with me. I didn’t know he was going to do that.'”
“I told her that it’s not her fault,” Thomas said. “He should not have been in that bathroom.”
Thomas, who took her daughter to the hospital upon learning about the matter, also contacted school officials. Two weeks later, she had a meeting with the principal and learned that the male student identifies as “gender fluid.” She also learned that the school district has a policy allowing students to use the restroom that corresponds with their “gender identity.”
“I told the principal that I was demanding that the little boy be taken out of the classroom. At that point, she refused and said that she would not take him out of the classroom,” Thomas recounted.
“I said, ‘Well, what changes can you assure me can be made? Can you assure me that he will no longer be allowed to go into the girls’ bathroom?’ She said, ‘No. I can’t assure you of anything, and I’m not going to assure you of that,'” Thomas continued.
“I said, ‘So, you mean to tell me that my child has to come here every day and feel unsafe because you are refusing to do anything about what’s going on here?'”
The school did report the incident to the Department of Family and Children’s Services, but Thomas says that the matter was then turned on her, and representatives showed up at her door to investigate her and her children, since Thomas had been named as the “responsible party.”
“How do you, in your right mind, do something like that to a parent? Their child has been sexually assaulted, then you turn around and paint them as the villian, just to sweep it up under the rug all because it goes back to a policy that you have in place,” she remarked.
The school district has denied that the situation occurred as described.
“City Schools of Decatur is committed to supporting all students. We are aware of the unfounded allegations made by the Alliance Defending Freedom. We fully disagree with their characterization of the situation and are addressing it with the Office of Civil Rights,” it said in a statement.
The district added that it will not comment further since the issue is a pending legal matter.
A spokesperson for the Department of Education told The Hill that the investigation centers on “the school’s response to a report of sexual assault and the examination of any and all factors that may have contributed to a hostile environment.”