Update: The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 3rd Circuit ruled against student privacy. Alliance Defending Freedom will continue to advocate for the privacy rights of Alexis and the other students in the Boyertown Area School District and may appeal this ruling.
Alexis Lightcap knows what it’s like to feel as if she has no voice.
“I completely lost my voice,” she says of her time in the foster care system. “I lost who I was.”
When she and her sister were adopted, though, her parents helped her rediscover her voice. “You have a say in this world, and you need to speak up for yourself,” they would tell her.
But recent events in her school district have once again threatened to silence her. When her school district, Boyertown Area School District, made changes to its policies to grant access to students who identify as the opposite sex to the restrooms and locker rooms of their choice, it did not inform the students or the parents.
They were given no voice in the matter.
So Alexis is joining an ongoing lawsuit against the policies to speak up for herself and for the other students whose privacy was ignored by the policy change.
Alexis could have participated in this lawsuit anonymously. But she is choosing to publicly take a stand and to offer the perspective of a high school girl who is personally affected by this school district policy.
It’s the perspective that comes from walking into one of the bathrooms at school, where she saw the reflection of a man in the mirror. She was terrified and ran out of the bathroom. From there, she went straight to the school administration to report the incident. But her grade-level principal didn’t remedy the situation. He informed her of the new district policies and sent her on her way.
School administrators have a duty to protect the privacy and safety of all of their students. Boyertown Area School District has failed this duty by only looking out for the interests of a few, and not the whole.
So Alexis is taking her voice back.
She is standing up for the privacy and safety of her fellow students, including her 13-year-old younger sister. She is standing up to say that there are solutions that protect the privacy and safety of all students, not just a few.
Alexis has lost her voice at the hands of government systems before – and she’s not going to let it happen again.