A couple in Woodburn, Oregon is suing their school district after they discovered their eight-year-old son was asked repeatedly by his teacher if he was transgender.
The parents, who are keeping their identity private, are suing the district for nearly $1 million because they say their son's second grade teacher held him back from recess on multiple occasions to personally ask him if he believed he was really a girl. They said the teacher also gave their son reading materials, videos, and other resources explaining what it means to be transgender.
The parents say they had no idea this was happening and believe what the teacher did was inappropriate.
The mother found out about the one-on-one conversations when she found the books her teacher had given her son in his backpack.
"He feels different now, he feels confused. To hear your son say that…on a couch talking to a therapist, holding back tears – it's very heartbreaking," the mother said, according to Fox 12.
The parents say their child had a stomach problem, which made him uncomfortable with using the restroom. They suspect his hesitation about going to the bathroom made his teacher believe he could have gender dysphoria.
They say their child suffered significant emotional confusion by being singled out by his teacher.
He is on anxiety medication and regularly sees a therapist.
"He can be whatever he wants, I don't care what he is. I just want him to be my happy son and I feel like she messed that up. It frustrates me that my son can be influenced that drastically, and nothing be done about it. They just wanted to sweep it under the rug," said the father.
They said the school acknowledged the teacher's actions, but the teacher still works at the school.