School District Probed in Walsh Suicide
BY Advocate.com Editors
December 22 2010 8:55 AM ET
Federal education officials have launched a probe into the Central California school district where Seth Walsh, who was 13 years old, took his own life after suffering antigay bullying from classmates.
According to the Associated Press, a spokesman for Education Secretary Arne Duncan confirmed the investigation.
“The probe was launched in response to a complaint from Seth Walsh's mother that Tehachapi Unified School District employees failed to adequately address the years of bullying that preceded her son's death last Sept. 28, spokesman Justin Hamilton said,” the AP reported.
Wendy Walsh said that investigators from the Education Department spent two days in the school district last week interviewing students, teachers, and administrators.
Although federal civil rights laws do not cover sexual orientation, the AP reported that the investigations can be pursued under laws prohibiting discrimination on the basis of gender stereotypes.