Lambda Legal has filed suit against Indian River High School (in upstate New York) on behalf of Charlie Pratt and his sister, Ashley Petranchuk. The lawsuit alleges that Charlie suffered harassment and abuse at the hands of his peers while school officials failed to intervene. Lambda charges that the school’s anti-gay bias is also evidenced in the principal’s refusal to let Ashley start a gay-straight alliance to support her brother.
This article in Outcome (Buffalo’s Gay Newspaper) describes the harassment Charlie endured:
Students attacked him relentlessly with antigay and sexist slurs including names like “faggot,” “sissy,” “queer,” and “fudgepacker,” often in the presence of teachers who failed to intervene. Students also pushed him into walls and lockers, threatened him, threw food and other objects at him, spat on him, and vandalized his locker with antigay slurs. Staff members at the high school joined the harassment by ridiculing Charlie with stereotypically effeminate gestures in front of other students.
Then-principal James Kettrick – now the district’s superintendent