Making a federal case out of petty politics in high school cheerleading: Where else but Texas?
The mother of a former Creekview High School cheerleader has filed a federal lawsuit against Carrollton-Farmers Branch schools, arguing the district did not sufficiently discipline cheerleaders who she says bullied her daughter.
The lawsuit, brought by Liz Laningham, argues that the district discriminated against her daughter and “turned a blind eye” to the harassment. The lawsuit could result in a jury trial.
So far as I can tell from the linked story, the main element of damages appears to be that Liz Laningham’s daughter did not make the cheerleading squad in her senior year, after being a member in her junior year. And there are the usual allegations of Facebook frippery, rumors and innuendos within the team, biased judging during senior year tryouts, etc. etc.
What I can’t tell from this Dallas Morning News story is what possible basis Liz Laningham’s lawyer could have for bringing this action in federal court. While various civil rights acts prohibit discrimination on the basis of race, religion, disability, etc., none of those are named as putative grounds for the suit. As for sex and age discrimination, presumably the victim and her harassers are all young women. Does Title IX prohibit girls from being girls?
And does any girl, no matter how spoiled and entitled her mother has made her, have a right to lead cheers?