An Indiana school district has reached an out-of-court settlement ending a three-year-long lawsuit that accused school officials of violating a biracial student’s civil rights by suspending her after a fight with a white classmate.
Media reports indicate that the Penn-Harris-Madison School Corp. has agreed to pay former student Kelsey West $30,000.
Ms. West’s mother, Ann Hostetler, filed the civil rights claim alleging racial discrimination in June 2007 on behalf of her then-freshman daughter, who was suspended after fighting with another teenager at Penn High School.
Ms. West, who is biracial, and her mother believed the school treated the girl unfairly and significantly more harshly than the white student involved—an allegation later supported through findings by the Indiana Civil Rights Commission.
A version of this article appeared in the April 28, 2010 edition of Education Week as Indiana District Settles With Student in Bias Lawsuit