Student sues over sexually explicit survey

By WND Staff

A grade-school student and her mother are suing a school district for allegedly compelling children to answer sexually explicit questions in a survey, without the consent or knowledge of parents.

The American Family Association Center for Law & Policy, which filed the suit, charges Billings School District No. 2 in Montana with “recklessly using its students as guinea pigs” in a Montana State University psychological study.

The case arose when the district agreed to allow the university to use its fifth and sixth grade classes as subjects in the study, AFA said.

Under the policy and practices employed by the district, students were presumed to have consented to the study unless they returned an “opt out” letter that was provided by MSU and modified by the district.

But the mother, whose name is being withheld due to privacy concerns, says she never received the letter, and the district presumed her daughter’s consent to the study, which focused, in part, on genital growth and development.

After learning that her daughter had been forced to participate in the study, the mother notified McKinley Elementary School’s principal, Dr. Shanna Henry. The mother informed Henry her daughter would not be permitted to participate again in the study, a fact, says AFA, which the district admits.

Two days later, however, the girl was subjected to the same sexually oriented study.

Nevertheless, says AFA, the district is placing blaming on the student.

“This is a classic example of the blame game gone bad,” stated Stephen M. Crampton, chief counsel for the AFA.

Crampton says that “according to the district, it should not be held responsible even though it readily admits it had express notice that [the student] was not to participate in the sexually charged study.”

Crampton wonders “if parents understand the lesson the district is teaching both parents and students, namely, that the school knows best and that parents have no rights.”