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Vice Principal Who Harassed Trans Teen in Bathroom Back on the Job

West Virginia Principal Harasses Trans Kid

The West Virginia principal appealed a decision not to renew his contract last month and won.

A West Virginia vice principal is back on the job after he insisted a transgender teen pee in front of him in late 2018, LGBTQ Nation reports.

The Harrison County Board of Education reinstated Lee Livengood after it voted to remove him from his position only a month ago. Livengood appealed the decision and won.

At the time, superintendent Mark Manchin told the Charleston Gazette-Mail that he "would not suggest that there's any correlation" between Livengood's actions and his termination. Machin said there was "a lot of discussion" before reinstating Livengood.

In 2018, Livengood entered a restroom where 15-year-old Michael Critchfield was, and forced Critchfield to use a urinal to "prove" his gender. Critchfield reportedly blocked the exit and said, "Why are you in this bathroom? You shouldn't be here." He told the student, "You freak me out."

"It was a very traumatizing experience," Critchfield told Out in an interview last December. "No one should experience a situation like this no matter their identity. Schools should be safe environment for all students."

According to LGBTQ Nation, Critchfield's family tried to advocate for a change in the school's policy to benefit trans students, as well as trainings for faculty and staff, but the school refused to meet with them. When the family took the story public, Livengood was disciplined and then back on the job in January. His contract was not renewed in March and now, a month later, he's been reinstated.

Rather than apologize for harassing Critchfield, Livengood sent the 15-year-old student a note that read, "I'm deeply sorry for raising my voice while in the bathroom on 11/27/18. I promise it won't happen again."

The ACLU of West Virginia released a statement about the decision on Twitter, saying: "We want to reaffirm our demand that Mr. Livengood not be allowed any contact with Michael or any children. Mr. Livengood has demonstrated that he is incapable of conducting himself in a professional manner in any environment with students, and he has shown a troubling lack of remorse for his actions."

The organization said it would continue to monitor the situation.

RELATED | Trans Teen Michael Critchfield Speaks Out After Harassment at School

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