John Klar: Vermont school superintendent battles parents who challenge girls’ changing room policies

By John Klar

A Vermont high school recently banned all girls volleyball players from the school’s changing room after parents complained and one girl spoke to local media.  The student at Randolph Union High School, who expressed discomfort from a person with a penis hanging out while the girls changed clothes, is being “investigated” by the school for harassment.  Parents who disagreed are also being investigated by the school superintendent, who is policing Facebook posts and issued his own bizarre edict: he called upon his fellow social justice warriors to team up against the concerned families.

Superintendent Layne Millington penned an October 4 screed to the community, in which he vaguely characterized expressions of opposition to the school’s ill-considered actions:

This bout of hatred and bigotry we are experiencing does not represent our town, our district, who we are, or what we stand for, and the district will not stand by as a small number of folks seek to use social media to destroy something as good and special as what’s been created here by a dedicated and caring faculty.   I’m asking the community to stand up against the hate, the misinformation, and the folks whose only motivation is causing havoc and generating fear.

This superintendent does not identify what language or statements are hateful, thus targeting in his diatribe any objection by worried parents to the student with a penis leering at their daughters while changing.  (The transgender student does not in fact change clothes: ‘they’ just ogle the topless teens).  This school official is using public channels to police social media for any undefined opposition to the school’s perverse policy decision in bold violation of constitutional prohibitions against speech content discrimination.

Millington continues:

I’m asking the parents and families to take some time and push back: a message on social media, on the Front Porch Forum, a letter to the editor, a story with a reputable statewide news organization is all it takes.  Remind the world who we are and what the overwhelming majority in our communities stand for.  In most communities I’ve worked in over a very long career, when a small group of people intentionally damage the image of the town or their schools, the town has something to say.  Randolph, Brookfield, and Braintree – you need to find your voice

This outrageous behavior by a woke bureaucrat is par for the Layne course.  This same tyrannical Superintendent slandered parents who rightly objected to the flying of the BLM flag at the school, claiming their very justifiable constitutional concerns instead reflected racist hate in the community.  He prohibited students from wearing shirts that stated “Let’s Go Brandon” or ”There are only two genders.”  And he canceled a baseball team fundraisersolely for using Chick-Fil-A chicken (a novel offer because there are no franchises in the Green Mountain State).

Parents and students claim Millington has retaliated against students who question his ideological edicts (or whose parents do), including with biased disciplinary actions and academic opportunities.  The school suffers from poor proficiency test scores, but under the rule of Millington has stifled any opposition to the social justice experimentation inflicted on children.  Not even national outrage over this ridiculous locker room decision will curb his efforts at domination: he has grown accustomed to lording it over the community with his blatant efforts at thought domination.

Even before this kingly call to arms by clueless Superintendent Millington, Caitlin Jenner unequivocally proclaimed that

We cannot have biological boys with penises changing next to our daughters in locker rooms, and then have our daughters scolded by the school. This is so backwards. Shame on Vermont!

But Layne Millington seemingly has no shame.

Millington’s effort to rally his Social Justice Warriors to target parents does not define what “hatred and bigotry” he is asking them to attack, while impugning the motives of all conscientious objectors as “folks whose only motivation is causing havoc and generating fear.”  But Layne has the shoe on the wrong bureaucratic foot, as he abusively projects onto the community.  If rightly concerned parents question having a penis-born child gaping at their topless adolescents while they change clothes, they are bigots.  If they defend the girl who expressed discomfort at this behavior, they are labeled hateful.  There is no delineation of what speech this public official seeks to quell, and he has a long history of precisely this abusiveness.

This case becomes more bizarre each day, as Millington circles the cult wagonsand barricades the free speech doors.  But the community has had enough of this bullying.  Many parents are aware of where the hate and bigotry truly reside, and they know what their constitutional rights are.  They are consulting with attorneys and preparing to charge this ideological citadel.  (An existing petition for Millington’s resignation has gained renewed circulation.)

Parents in Vermont will, like all informed Americans, protect their daughters. Layne Millington should resign quickly, and flee the accountability he so desperately fights to avoid. Then perhaps normalcy – teaching math instead of extremist political radicalization – can be restored to this long-beleaguered school.

John Klar is an attorney and farmer residing in Brookfield. This commentary originally appeared at American Thinker.

Image courtesy of Public domain

17 thoughts on “John Klar: Vermont school superintendent battles parents who challenge girls’ changing room policies

  1. Millington does not own the children or the school. The parents who pay for it all and also have the rights and responsibilities of their children need to stand up and have this know it all, agitator and mini dictator removed from that school as well as any teachers who support his brand of hate. I can’t think of anything more important then the protection of these children under his dictates and transgender indoctrination of this schools administration. And in another note as mentioned above, public employee unions need to go. We are paying for other people’s retirement and healthcare while we have none ourselves. The schools are failing our children and we are are treating the teacher like Gods. This has to stop. Democrats love misery for you while they reap the wealth of the taxpayers money. Apparently, the voters in Vermont can’t outrun stupid and voting democrat time after time proves it. This is not your daddy’s democratic party. Wake to hell up!

  2. People have gone a little too far afield with this. The original complaint was that somebody with a penis was looking at girls’ breasts.

    In any middle- and high-school locker room, it’s normal for girls to look at one another’s breasts– you know, “How do mine compare?”

    This particular penis-equipped person, in the course of changing sex, was very likely motivated by the same thought– “How will mine compare?” Comments?

    • Title 13 : Crimes And Criminal Procedure
      Chapter 059 : Lewdness And Prostitution
      Subchapter 001 : Lewd And Indecent Conduct
      SS 2605. Voyeurism
      3) “Circumstances in which a person has a reasonable expectation of privacy” means circumstances in which a reasonable person would believe that his or her intimate areas would not be visible to the public, regardless of whether that person is in a public or private area. This definition includes circumstances in which a person knowingly disrobes in front of another, but does not expect nor give consent for the other person to photograph, film, or record his or her intimate areas.

          • Dano, you empower your daughters by having a competent adult talk the issue through with all the children involved. “Have you looked at other girls’ breasts? Why did you do so? How did they feel about you looking? How do you feel about them looking at yours?” And so on; the point is to help the girls realize that they are in a position of power on this issue.

        • Yes, I have looked at a woman’s breasts but not a child’s. I did so because I am a healthy heterosexual male and was never a transgender youth or confused about my gender. I also have a daughter who I would protect to any end. My daughter is empowered by being brought up in a healthy environment and was not indoctrinated by the school she attended. The girls are not in power when the administration takes a side of a confused boy and locks them out of their locker room. Apparently you are as confused as the boy. I’ll ask again, how many daughter do you have in school or do you have any daughters at all?

          • It’s not daughters, Dano; it’s sexuality. Children who receive sound information– by both example and word– in their families handle adolescence better because they know the score ahead of time.

            My own upbringing taught me that just about anyone outside a family is far more competent than I to discuss the topic. Here’s what I learned from my parents:

            From Mum, when I noticed that there was a fresh bloodstain on the paternal sheet: “I had a nosebleed last night.” My unspoken reaction: “Boy, she really hides under the covers.”

            From Da after half a minute of contemplation, when I asked him the meaning of a word I’d come across in an account of life among villagers in the South Seas: “That’s when somebody is very angry.” The word in question was “incest.”

            The priest’s sex ed talk in high school was no help; everyone in the class realized that HE’d be the shadow behind the confessional screen when they talked about having impure thoughts.

            I was completely unprepared for predatory advances by any man or woman, and it is to the credit of my son’s teachers, pediatrician, school nurses and other informed and supportive adults that he learned the score far earlier and more fully than I ever did.

            So, if your daughter is empowered, she is obviously someone who might be able to sit down with all the children involved and help them sort things out, or explain to the principal a better way of dealing with the situation rather than simply smothering it.

  3. NECN March 2014 Swampscott, MA: Principal Layne Millington said, “Within the first couple of weeks, I had five incidents dealing with drugs and alcohol which is a bit concerning.” So with the backing of the superintendent and school board, Layne Millington has called a “mandatory” meeting for parents to discuss the issues and the school’s new substance abuse policy. That’s mandatory – as in, if parents don’t attend, their child won’t be participating in sports or extracurricular activities. Superintendent Lynne Celli said, “It’s not about being the heavy-handed administrators, but truly trying to go at this as many ways as we can, so that we can keep the students safe.” But some parents don’t see it that way. Dr. Judy Bevis, the parent of a freshman, said, “We have very mixed feelings because we’re very glad the principal is addressing this very serious problem, on the other hand, we’re grownups and we don’t need a hall pass from the principal anymore.”

    Appears Layne Millington has a history of being a militant educator and an established disdain for parents rights. Appears he is better suited for employment in China rather than USA.

  4. We have a majority party, their handmaidens in the media and law enforcement agencies weaponized against concerned parents throughout the country regarding this and related issues of their role in their child’s upbringing. Who would have ever seen this coming considering that we Americans traditionally have enjoyed the greatest level of civil liberties protections of any citizens on the planet, thanks to our Constitution. This shows you how far we have spiraled down and the need to remedy the situation in the next election. I dont hold out a lot of hope for Vermont, but we can hope a majority of citizens nationwide recognize the threats to the traditional family by bureaucrats like this superintendent and vote to remove that “majority party” from their tyrannical meddling. If Vermont’s students were acing standardized tests we wouldn’t feel so bad about the unsustainable budgets of our public education system and the ridiculous teacher/student ratios but all we are getting now is indoctrination WITHOUT the reading, writing and ‘rithmatic.

    • Rich: The problem rests with one word: MONOPOLY. An illegal entity everywhere in the U.S. (Sherman Anti-Trust Act) except our public schools.

      The public-school monopoly has been indoctrinating students and imposing its authority over parents and taxpayers for 30 years or more. The names and issues change. But the process has been the same since the various unions (teachers, superintendents, and principals for the most part) exerted control over the monopoly. The parable that comes to mind is the Pied Piper of Hamlin Town, a warning of sorts dating back to the Middle Ages. We knew better and chose to abdicate our responsibility. Now we are paying the piper.

      School Choice!

      • I also place much of the blame for their political influence in the fact that public sector unions are allowed to exist. Teacher unions function the way all other public sector unions do in that they take public, taxpayer money from the bloated salaries of educators and funnel it back to the coffers of the democrat party. ALL public sector unions should be banned. Public sector employees should get all the advocacy they require through state legislatures and municipal councils.

        • Re: “Public sector employees should get all the advocacy they require through state legislatures and municipal councils.”

          This is the problem. Forty percent of Vermont’s workforce is employed in Government, Education and Healthcare sectors – all legislature regulated.

          And yes, the American Federation of State, County & Municipal Employees union (AFSCME) are of particular concern and should be held to account under the terms of the same Taft–Hartley Act Ronald Reagan cited with the Air-Traffic Controlers in 1981.

          But my advice is to not focus on the education monopoly unions. Just break the monopoly.

          As long as citizens can choose where and with whom to spend their education dollars, the unions should be allowed to do whatever they choose. And parents will vote with their wallets.

          If Vermont’s K-12 Tuitioning governance applied to all Vermont parents, not just the several districts with current Tuitioning vouchers, those schools with unions advocating policies in conflict with parental choices would find themselves with empty classrooms. Problem solved.

  5. This Transgender AGENDA, and it IS An Agenda, this is going to end and end badly- for these kids and the parents that have done this to them.

    They can think what they want, but people ARE NOT going to accept this.

    I believe they are doubling down because they know what I am saying is right.

    “Top Medical Center to pause transgender surgery on minors after backlash”.

    When you have “backlash”, this is a giant hint that something is not right and not being accepted.
    We The People are speaking and they better pay attention..

  6. Vermont’s public-school monopoly: Two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch.

    Superintendent Millington is trying to indoctrinate the community in his district, as well as the students, to be and do what he prescribes. And, as usual, anyone who doesn’t drink his Kool-aide is demonstrating “hatred and bigotry”. ‘Normalcy’ is not, and never will be, on his menu. So, parents and their children better be damn sure they aren’t on the menu either.

    Get you kids out of the public-school system. It’s in a very dangerous state of anarchy. Let it whither and die of its own accord.

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