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Another battle over bathrooms brews in Brevard

Photo: Pixabay
Photo: Pixabay

Republican Rep. Randy Fine is calling on the Florida commissioner of education to investigate an alleged student on student sexual assault at a Brevard County middle school. The only problem?  The district says the incident never happened. 

The Republican representative claims that a transgender girl sexually assaulted another girl in a women’s bathroom at Johnson Middle School over the summer. 

Fine, who wants to make gender-affirming care for children illegal in Florida, wrote to Commissioner Manny Diaz asking him to investigate the alleged incident. 

In the letter, Fine criticized what he called Brevard County Schools' “open bathroom policy,” which allows students to use bathrooms and locker rooms that correspond with their gender identity. 

But Russell Bruhn, a spokesperson for the school district says the incident never happened and that Fine’s claim is false. 

Bruhn says, “Our staff at Johnson deserve better and we look forward to an apology from the representative for his reckless disregard for the truth.”

This school year will be the first that the Parental Rights in Education or “Don’t Say Gay” law backed by Gov. Ron DeSantis and the Republican-led legislature will take effect. 

The law bans the discussion of gender identity and sexual orientation in grades K-3.

Danielle Prieur is a general assignment reporter at WMFE. You can hear her reporting on a daily basis on the station. She also fills-in as a host during the morning and afternoon drive times. Her reporting has been featured on NPR, Marketplace, Here & Now, and Vox. Danielle is originally from Rochester Hills, Michigan and is a graduate of both the University of Michigan and Northwestern University. In her free time, she enjoys playing her guitar, writing fiction, and cooking.