America First Legal, helmed by former Trump advisor Stephen Miller, announced a lawsuit against Loudoun County Public Schools (LCPS)on Wednesday, alleging that district policy takes away parental rights.
“The Defendants’ policies and practices are intended to force or have the effect of forcing Plaintiffs into choosing between their fundamental right to direct the education, moral instruction, and upbringing of their children, and their right to free public elementary and secondary education,” the complaint states.
AFL’s lawsuit is the latest in a series of conservative legal challenges to LCPS and its school board that range from recall petitions to a grand jury investigation ordered by Governor Glenn Youngkin. AFL’s board includes several key Trump-era officials including Trump’s Chief of Staff Mark Meadows. Additionally, Ian Prior, a former Trump Department of Justice official, is senior legal advisor at AFL.
Prior also helms Fight for Schools, a Loudoun-based organization that led recall petition efforts that eventually failed, and is now working to defeat Representative Jennifer Wexton (D-VA-10).
The AFL lawsuit plaintiffs are 11 LCPS parents, and it lists a number of defendants, including the school board and Superintendent Scott Ziegler. It says LCPS policies violate parental rights, including requiring schools to secretly support a child’s gender transition, and using “social and emotional learning” to affect a child’s behavior and attitude in relation to race and gender without parental consent. It also alleges that the school uses “racial balancing” and quotas to favor some children at the expense of others, and says the school intentionally failed to provide a safe learning environment.
“With intentional disregard for their legal duties and obligations to Plaintiffs and other parents, Defendants have used and are using taxpayer money to advance a ‘woke’ agenda of racial and gender indoctrination, disconnected from any legitimate academic purpose,” the complaint argues.
As relief, AFL asks the court to declare that the school district is violating plaintiffs’ rights and block them from further violations. The AFL also wants court-appointed oversight of the district, LCPS to be required to pay for plaintiffs’ students’ school costs at other schools until the alleged violations stop, at least $1.5 million in damages plus six percent interest and legal fees.
In the press release, Miller criticized the school district’s transgender policies: “These are mafia tactics from Loudoun schools, being used to sexualize and indoctrinate children as young as five, all in the name of forcing radical gender ideology onto captive minors. If this was happening outside the context of a school, the adults engineering and sanctioning this madness would be under criminal investigation.”
The LCPS did not return a request for comment.
– – –