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Teacher says she was told to mislead “suspect” parents about children’s stated gender identities at school; now he is suing

A California public school teacher said she was told to mislead “suspicious” parents about her children’s declared gender identities at school, and now she’s suing.

What are the details?

“It’s unfortunate that I have to go head-to-head and face a community of people that I love,” teacher Elizabeth Mirabelli told Fox News. “I’ve been here 25 years. This is a community of people I care about, people I’ve served for a long time. And it gives me pause to have to stand up, but I felt I had to make that choice.”

The cable network said lawyers for Mirabelli and fellow teacher Lori Ann West, who both taught for decades at Escondido’s Rincon Middle School, filed a federal lawsuit last week against the school’s leadership, claiming they had to lie to parents whose children assumed different gender identities at school.

More from Fox News:

The lawsuit, which was also filed against Escondido Union School District (EUSD) administrators and the California State Board of Education, alleged that the school district’s harassment and discrimination policies K- 8 forced teachers to accept a child’s transgender or gender diverse identity without hesitation and hide it from families.

The lawsuit also claims they were ordered to use the students’ preferred names and pronouns at school, but to revert to their biological pronouns and first names when speaking with their parents. Teachers were told to tell “a suspicious parent” that they were only allowed to discuss “information about the student’s behavior regarding school, classroom rules, assignments, etc. “, according to the lawsuit.

According to a transcript of a Feb. 3, 2022, training presentation to EUSD staff on the “rights of gender-diverse students” obtained by Fox News Digital, teachers were instructed that “the assertion” of ‘one student is enough to determine gender identity and this failure. assert that it would constitute harassment. The training also stated that “there is no requirement for parent or guardian agreement or even knowledge for us to begin treating this student in accordance with their gender identity.”

Mirabelli added to the cable network that last year he “found himself personally faced with a dilemma” when several new students asked him to refer to them by different names and not tell their parents.

While figuring out how to address the situation, Mirabelli told Fox News that she learned from the school counselor that students’ names were being changed in official school records without parents’ knowledge or consent.

“How do educators know better than their parents and families? Why do we take responsibility for these children’s well-being and decisions as personal as their names?” Mirabelli asked, according to the cable network. “I just felt that this was so over the top as a teacher, as an educator. This is overstepping our role in their lives. And then they don’t allow us to tell their parents? I thought that doesn’t look good.”

In addition, Mirabelli is Catholic and told Fox News that the school’s policies about it violate her faith and beliefs. He noted to the cable network that after requesting a religious accommodation, he was only given a partial accommodation.

With that, Mirabelli told Fox News that she sued on First Amendment grounds after the school allegedly denied her request for a waiver regarding the parental exclusion policy.

“I think we all know easily that lying is not something you want to do, and it’s certainly not something you want to teach kids,” he added to the cable network. “If I say to a child, ‘Yes, honey, you can have a whole person here at school, but we’re not going to tell your parents,’ what does that teach a child?”

What did the school district say?

“The Escondido Union School District is committed to providing a safe and positive environment that allows our students to learn and actualize their unlimited potential and that allows our teachers to excel as educators,” he told Fox News EUSD Superintendent Dr. Luis A. Rankins-Ibarra. in a statement. “As part of this commitment to student learning, the district observes all federal and state laws.”

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