On September 3, 2019, six African-American students, through their parents, filed a civil rights lawsuit against Independent School District 112 a/k/a Eastern Carver County Schools, alleging severe and pervasive racism at the district’s Chaska, Minnesota schools. The lawsuit alleges that the district allowed racism to permeate its schools for years with African-American students having been called “monkey,” told they “don’t belong,” physically assaulted, racially profiled, called the “N word,” and even threatened to be killed. The lawsuit walks through each of the six student’s experiences in the district, cataloguing horrific acts of racism by white students and the district’s deliberate indifference to the same. The lawsuit alleges that the district failed to take any meaningful action in response to parents’ and students’ repeated complaints and exhibited clear bias in favor of white students. As a result, the students have suffered emotional trauma and substantial disruption to their education, and several have left the district out of fear for their physical, personal, and educational well-being. Seeking change, the students brought this suit under Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Minnesota Human Rights Act, and the Fourteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution pursuant to Section 1983.
"Our public schools are supposed to respect and keep children safe while creating an educational environment in which they can thrive. That didn’t happen for African-American students in Chaska,” said Plaintiffs’ attorney Anna P. Prakash of Nichols Kaster, PLLP. “Our clients tried and continue to try to get help from the administration,” said Prakash, “But, with all they have experienced and because meaningful change has not happened, they filed this lawsuit. Given the racial tensions in the district, these students and their parents are incredibly brave. We are honored to represent them.”
The Plaintiffs are represented by Matthew H. Morgan, Anna P. Prakash, and Laura A. Baures of Nichols Kaster, PLLP, and Joshua A. Newville of Madia Law LLC. The case is T.B., et al. v. Independent School District 112, a/k/a Eastern Carver County Schools, 0:19-cv-02414, and is filed in the United States District Court for the District of Minnesota.