Teacher Suspended for Not Using Student’s Preferred Name, Pronouns Gets $95,000 Settlement

A teacher in Kansas has received a $95,000 settlement after she was suspended by her former employer for refusing to use a student’s preferred name and pronoun.

Pamela Ricard, who had taught math at Fort Riley Middle School before she retired in May, was suspended for three days by the school in April 2021, and received a formal written reprimand that same month for “addressing a biologically female student by the student’s legal and enrolled last name,” according to a lawsuit Ricard filed in March against school officials (pdf).

In a statement on Aug. 31, Alliance Defending Freedom announced that Fort Riley Middle School officials “have agreed to pay $95,000 in damages and attorneys’ fees for violating a math teacher’s First Amendment rights when they reprimanded and suspended her for addressing a student by the student’s legal and enrolled name and forced her to conceal the student’s social transition from the student’s parents.”

Attorneys with Alliance Defending Freedom and Kriegshauser Ney Law Group represented Ricard in her lawsuit.

As part of the settlement, school officials agreed to issue a statement that Ricard was in good standing without any disciplinary actions against her at the time she retired in May, the Alliance Defending Freedom announced in a statement.

Because of the settlement, attorneys for Alliance Defending Freedom filed a dismissal (pdf) of the case on Aug. 31.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.