A local school district is responding to allegations of discrimination against a transgender first grader.
Officials with the Fountain-Fort Carson School District released the following statement about Coy Mathis:
“The parents of Coy Mathis have filed a charge of discrimination with the Colorado Division of Civil Rights. They have chosen to publicize this matter by appearing on a nationally televised show with their child, sharing their point of view with national and local media, and holding a public press conference to announce the filing of the charge. The District firmly believes it has acted reasonably and fairly with respect to this issue. However, the District believes the appropriate and proper forum for discussing the issues identified in the charge is through the Division of Civil Rights process. The District is preparing a response to the charge which it will submit to the Division. Therefore, the District will not comment further on this matter out of respect for the process which the parents have initiated.”
A Fountain family tells 11 News their transgender 6-year-old is being discriminated against at Eagleside Elementary School in Fountain. They are now taking legal action against the Fountain-Fort Carson School District.
Coy Mathis was born a boy, but now lives life as a girl.
"When she was about 18 months old and started to talk, as soon as she was able to, it was that she was a girl and she liked girl things," said Coy's mom, Kathryn Mathis.
Coy is now in first grade. She was going to Eagleside Elementary School, where she was treated as a girl and used the girls' bathroom.
"After she did transition and was able to live as a girl, her true self, the difference was amazing. Her anxiety went away, the depression went away, and she was finally happy," said Mathis.
The family then got a letter from the school district. It stated in part that because Coy was born a male, "at least some parents and students are likely to become uncomfortable with his continued use of the girls' restroom."
"That's just not a safe environment for her. It sets her up for harassment and bullying," said Mathis.
Coy is now home-schooled along with her brother and sisters.
11 News talked to some parents in a nearby neighborhood. Most of them didn't want to talk on camera about the controversial issue. 11 News talked to one mom who admires the parents for sticking up for their child, but ultimately agrees with the school.
"From a parental standpoint, I think the school district did the right thing," said Candance Toscano.
11 News has put in several calls to the Fountain- Fort Carson School District have not been returned. As soon as we hear from the district, we will let you know what they say.
The family is holding a news conference in Denver Wednesday to talk about the issue and what their family is going through.