Wisconsin School District Facing Civil Rights Complaint After Allegedly Allowing Male To Shower Alongside Teen Girls
Bench in Locker Room
Credit: Michael Prince via Getty Images.

The Wisconsin Institute for Law and Liberty (WILL) filed a federal complaint with the Department of Education’s civil rights division after a teenage girl said that her school allowed a male who identified as female to shower alongside four teenage girls in a locker room. 

The complaint comes after WILL said that an 18-year-old male showered naked alongside four 14-year-old girls earlier this year at Sun Prairie East High School (EHS) in Sun Prairie, Wisconsin. The complaint, filed to the Office of Civil Rights at the Department of Education, was made on behalf of the parents of one of the girls by WILL, a Wisconsin-based conservative law firm. 

“Parents and students should feel safe and have peace of mind when kids go back to school this fall. But, the Sun Prairie Area School District has frankly been dismissive in how it has handled the alleged sexual harassment towards these four freshman girls. The Department of Education Office of Civil Rights should promptly investigate the allegations made in this complaint, then act swiftly to remedy unlawful policies and practices,” said WILL Associate Counsel Cory Brewer.

The complaint argues that Sun Prairie Area School District’s locker room policy violates Title IX, a policy that prohibits sex and gender discrimination. It says that the locker room policy is harmful to all girls in the school district. 

According to WILL, the incident prompting the complaint occurred on March 23 when several girls were showering after swim class. 

“As the girls began to shower, the male student approached them, entered the shower area, announced ‘I’m trans, by the way,’ and then fully undressed and showered next to the girls. He was initially turned towards the wall but turned and fully exposed his body to the four girls,” the complaint says. “He had not transitioned medically and had the physiological appearance of an adult male. Understandably, the girls closed their eyes and tried to hurry up and leave the showers.”

The complaint says that the assistant principal of the school did not inform a Title IX coordinator after learning of the incident. The girl says that she was never interviewed about the incident by the district Title IX coordinator. 

WILL, which has requested information on the school’s locker room policies and its handling of the incident, says that the school has been stonewalling the inquiry and demanded a payment of about $11,000 in order to cover the costs of the organization’s Freedom of Information request. 


“These troubling events are occurring across the country, and by no means what happened in Wisconsin is an isolated incident. It’s imperative that the Biden Administration responds to our complaint — while sending a clear message that common sense and the rule of law will prevail in schools across America,” said WILL Deputy Counsel Dan Lennington. 

The Biden administration has previously proposed expanding Title IX sports protections to gender identity, meaning that prohibiting a male who identified as a female to participate on a women’s sports team would be a violation of that student’s civil rights. 

However, Education Secretary Miguel Cardona appeared to say last month the department would oppose males showering alongside females. 

“We absolutely — as a father and as an educator— absolutely support making sure that boys and girls use different showers. That’s common sense,” he told Illinois Rep. Mary Miller (R-IL). 

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