Lakota School Board Member Darbi Boddy Files Motion Against Trans Students' Bathroom Choice, Sports Participation

"Lakota allows boys in girls bathrooms as we speak, and it is damaging our children."

May 5, 2023 at 4:37 pm
click to enlarge Darbi Boddy has been censured by Lakota School Board colleagues, and community members are petitioning for her removal. - Photo: Boddy for Lakota on Facebook
Darbi Boddy has been censured by Lakota School Board colleagues, and community members are petitioning for her removal.
A far-right member of the Lakota Board of Education will have to wait to push her policy that targets the rights of trans students.

Board member Darbi Boddy, who in the past has likened anti-suicide measures in schools to “the Nazi Handbook,” proposed a motion that would restrict trans students' use of their preferred bathroom and bar trans women from participating on women's sports teams. The motion, which was proposed in April, reads:

“Lakota allows boys in girls bathrooms as we speak, and it is damaging our children. This Board has the authority and the duty to fix this now. We cannot continue to be so feckless while our children suffer, and the liabilities increase.

I move that a policy be drafted to reflect the following:

1. Organized competitive sports for girls will be exclusive to biological girls. Boys as defined in this policy may not compete in any organized athletic competition that is or was designated or designed for girls. [This policy] is designed as a safeguard against girls’ sports being rendered obsolescent.

2. Bathrooms will be separated and exclusive according to biological sex. That in recognition of this biological reality we discontinue any policies (formal and informal), that allow biological boys in the girls restrooms and vice versa."

The board’s policy committee was slated to discuss the motion on May 5 but ran out of time. Board president Lynda O'Connor said the motion would be postponed until the next meeting, which the board’s website lists as June 5.

O'Connor apologized for the inconvenience to the packed audience of parents and community members, many of whom could be heard loudly laughing at Boddy’s comments throughout the meeting, including:

"It’s known that they are saying Republican men are bad,” Boddy said on the subject of using artificial intelligence website ChatGPT in schools.

“I can’t control what God tells people to tell me,” Boddy said while claiming a parent told her she was concerned that her kindergartener was being taught about sexual assault at school.

Boddy also repeatedly complained that various policies did not include “his or her gender references” when the policies referred to the student population.

Boddy, who started her first term on the board in January 2022, has been an outspoken critic of masking, vaccine policies, Critical Race Theory, Diversity, Equity and Inclusion training, and LGBTQ+ allyship in the district.

The district's former superintendent, Matt Miller, resigned in January, citing harassment and hostility from Boddy in a letter to the board.

"Her crusade to force me to resign is direct retaliation for my efforts to protect Lakota students of all genders and races from her destructive efforts," Miller said in the letter. "While the rest of the Board does not share Ms. Boddy’s views, the fact remains that she has succeeded in her efforts and destroyed my career in the bargain."

A petition to remove Boddy from the school board was created in 2022, which has so far racked up more than 60% of its 7,000 signature goal, according to the petition site. Based on the rules of the board, a  judge in the Butler County Court of Common Pleas would need to decide to remove Boddy from office.

But citizens aren't the only ones who want her out of office. Boddy's fellow board members asked her to resign in 2022 after Boddy posted a link to her public Facebook page the board deemed pornographic. Boddy said the post contained a typo in a link that took users to the wrong website.

Shortly thereafter, Boddy was issued a notice of trespassing when she walked around two Lakota schools without permission, taking photos of student projects that depicted rainbows and of teaching materials on the civil rights movement.

"I am in the schools as a responsible board member in an effort to understand and document the culture," Boddy wrote on Facebook after the incident.

The next school board meeting is scheduled for June 5, with a community "listening session" beginning at 5:30 p.m.

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