Mom Demands Investigation Into School That Hid Her Daughter’s Gender Transition, Provided Chest Binders

By Published on February 7, 2023

A mom is demanding an investigation into a Maine school district that allegedly hid her daughter’s gender transition and provided the 13-year-old girl with multiple chest binders, according to a letter by the Goldwater Institute.

Amber Lavigne allegedly found that Samuel Roy, a social worker at Great Salt Bay Community School, gave her 13-year-old daughter two chest binders to aid in a gender transition and advised her to not tell her mother, according to a Monday letter by the Goldwater Institute. The Goldwater Institute on behalf of Amber Lavigne is asking the school district to investigate the incident and institute a policy that mandates parental involvement in all decisions that affect a student’s mental or physical well-being.

“[My daughter] was going to school all day and getting kind of love bombed by all these people being called by the supposed preferred pronouns and this name that was not given to her at birth,” Lavigne told the Daily Caller News Foundation. “Then she’s coming home and being called a female name and using she/her pronouns, and it was really driving a wedge between us and I had no idea. I feel like my parental rights were violated and I don’t understand how somebody who works in social services thinks that driving this kind of wedge between a student and their parents is at all helpful for their mental health.”

School officials allegedly called Lavigne’s daughter by a male name and pronouns without notifying or receiving consent from her parents, the letter alleged. The Great Salt Bay Community School principal and superintendent dismissed Lavigne’s concerns that the school was helping her daughter secretly transition after she found the chest binders in her daughter’s room, she told the DCNF.

The school did not give Lavigne paperwork regarding her daughter’s gender transition, alleging that her daughter had requested they be kept from her parents, she told the DCNF. Lavigne brought the incident to the school board in December saying she had never met or been notified that her daughter was working with Roy, who had advised the girl to keep the chest binder a secret from her parents.

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“When administrators receive concerns from parents and/or students about potential issues in school, the board has specific procedures in place that must be followed when addressing these concerns,” the board said in a Dec. 19 statement. “Those policies comply with Maine law, which protects the right of all students and staff, regardless of gender/gender identity, to have equal access to education, the supports and services available in our public schools and the student’s right to privacy regardless of age.”

It is unclear what Roy’s employment status is at the school, and the Goldwater Institute has filed a Public Records Request to obtain more information surrounding the incident, Adam Shelton, Goldwater Staff attorney, told the DCNF.

“We see this as very much a part and parcel with a lot of our work with curriculum and academic transparency,” Shelton told the DCNF. “This idea that parents have a right to know what goes on in schools that includes what’s going on specifically with their kids and what schools are teaching their kids more in general. We see this in part of, like, our larger academic transparency work and trying to make sure that parents know what’s going on in their schools from the curriculum to what teachers are telling their kids.”

Roy could not be reached for comment and the Great Salt Bay Community School did not immediately respond to the DCNF’s request for comment.


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