Former Kilgore High student settles lawsuit with school district - KLTV.com-Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville, Texas | ETX News

Former Kilgore High student settles lawsuit with school district

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Skye Wyatt in a 2010 interview with KLTV. Skye Wyatt in a 2010 interview with KLTV.
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  • Statement from Texas Civil Rights Project

    Statement from Texas Civil Rights Project

    Friday, February 21 2014 6:39 PM EST2014-02-21 23:39:53 GMT
    A long-fought battle by a lesbian student who was harassed and ‘outed’ ended with the Kilgore Independent School District agreeing to update and maintain its policies and educate its staff, students, and parents, along with significant monetary compensation.More >>
    A long-fought battle by a lesbian student who was harassed and ‘outed’ ended with the Kilgore Independent School District agreeing to update and maintain its policies and educate its staff, students, and parents, along with significant monetary compensation.
    More >>
  • Statement from Kilgore ISD

    Statement from Kilgore ISD

    Friday, February 21 2014 6:39 PM EST2014-02-21 23:39:10 GMT
    The KISD Board believes that the actions of its employees were in all things lawful. The KISD Board believes that the pre-existing policies of the District were much more than adequate, and the Board Policies in existence at the time will continue to remain in full force and effect. No policies are going to be withdrawn, changed or modified. No new policies are going to be adopted. The Plaintiff’s counsel in this case attempted to bully the Board into changing its policies by threatening long...More >>
    The KISD Board believes that the actions of its employees were in all things lawful. The KISD Board believes that the pre-existing policies of the District were much more than adequate, and the Board Policies in existence at the time will continue to remain in full force and effect. No policies are going to be withdrawn, changed or modified. No new policies are going to be adopted. The Plaintiff’s counsel in this case attempted to bully the Board into changing its policies by threatening long...More >>
KILGORE, TX (KLTV) -

A legal battle between a former Kilgore Independent School District student and the school district came to an end on Friday when Skye Wyatt, a graduate of Kilgore High School, signed an agreement that ended her lawsuit against the school district.

In December 2010, Wyatt, now 21, filed a lawsuit against two Kilgore High School coaches and the school district seeking damages for allegedly violating her privacy rights for forcing her to reveal her sexual orientation and then telling her mother.

According to the lawsuit, in March 2009, Skye went to the softball field to meet with her teammates. Allegedly, the coaches dismissed the team and led Skye into an empty locker room, locked the door behind them and then started "interrogating" her. The suit claimed the girl was threatened and accused of having an sexual relationship with a female student. The suit stated the coaches also threatened to kick Wyatt off the team if she didn't say she had a girlfriend.

“It was a long, hard fight, but I’m really glad that the school district agreed to make a positive change that will prevent this from happening again,” said Wayne Krause Yang, the legal director of the Texas Civil Rights Project. "It’s not just a win for our client and her family, but for the school district, all of its students, and their parents. This will benefit everybody.”

Wyatt received "significant monetary compensation" in the settlement, according to the TCRP.

In a statement released to KLTV on Friday, Kilgore ISD said they believe the actions of their employees were within the law.

"They did nothing wrong. They tried to alert a parent, in the most innocuous manner possible, that her minor child could be exposed to an adult that was taking her off campus without the permission or authority of the parent or the School District," the district said. "The plaintiff’s counsel in this case attempted to bully the board into changing its policies by threatening long, expensive and protracted litigation."

The statement went on to say that although money was paid to Wyatt, the board had no power to oppose the payment of funds.

"It is a business decision of the insurance company, and the settlement is much less expensive than what the insurance carrier would spend in this case in attorney fees and costs through trial, appeal by the plaintiff to the Fifth Circuit [Court] and appeal by the plaintiff to the United States Supreme Court," the statement said.

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