Suit: Student Was Told Breasts Too Large for Cheerleading
Oct. 23, 1986
SANTA ANA, Calif. (AP) _ A teen-ager has filed a $1 million lawsuit against her school district, claiming a teacher told her she couldn't join the cheerleading squad because her breasts are too large.
''I was shocked. I didn't know what to think,'' 17-year-old Vicki Ann Guest of Fountain Valley said Wednesday. ''A couple of days later, when people found out about it, I was really embarrassed.''
The lawsuit, filed Wednesday in Orange County Superior Court, alleges teacher-adviser Jean Clower told the girl her grades and performance were acceptable for the cheerleading squad, but her breasts were too large.
Fountain Valley High School Principal Michael Kasler said Vicki failed to make the squad based on her skills, not her physical appearance.
Ms. Clower urged Miss Guest to have breast-reduction surgery as soon as possible, the suit alleges.
A senior who plans to study dance, Miss Guest said the adviser told her she would have to have surgery before she could become a performer.
''What upset me was that my daughter believed this,'' Vicki's mother, Ann Guest, said at a news conference Wednesday. ''She thought her body was wrong. She was embarrassed. She just wanted to die.''
The principal would not comment on whether the adviser had discussed breast size or surgery with the teen, saying, ''conferences between teachers, students and administrators are confidential.
A claim seeking $1 million from the Huntington Beach Unified School District was filed in conjunction with the suit.
District spokeswoman Cathy McGough said lawyers told the staff not to comment, but she added, ''I can tell you that our version of the events is different.''
The suit, filed by attorney Gloria Allred on behalf of Miss Guest and her parents, claims the teen-ager was subjected to discrimination and ridicule and that her constitutional rights were violated, Allred said.
It asks for a court order preventing the district from advising students to get cosmetic surgery as a condition of school participation.