A former vice principal for West Campus High School has taken legal action against the Sacramento City Unified School District alleging that she experienced years of racial harassment with no support or action from officials, The Sacramento Bee reports.
The lawsuit details incidents where Elysse Versher reportedly had her car tire slashed by a parent and witnessed a colleague refer to the school’s Black student union using a derogatory phrase within the same year – all with no action taken by the school district.
Furthermore, in October 2020 she alleges that a group of white students took over a class meeting via Zoom and hurled racial slurs at Black students. According to Versher, those students were not disciplined.
“This seriously disturbed the African-American students and made them hurt, upset, and terrified for their safety and well-being as African-American students at West Campus,” the court documents explain. “It also seriously disputed the learning environment in violation of well-established campus rules and regulations.”
Last week, the school district released findings from an internal investigation that came to the conclusion that Versher was racially abused last fall through graffiti found on campus, as well as on social media. Officials, however, could not identify suspects for either instances.
Versher recently resigned from the district after expressing that she no longer feels protected. She also announced that she needs time to heal from the traumatic experience and noted that her mental health has suffered because of it.
During a press conference led at the state Capitol, Versher was joined by lead attorney of Ivie McNeill Purcell & Diggs firm, Rodney Diggs, as well as the Greater Sacramento NAACP, Sacramento BAPAC, Black Lives Matter Sacramento, and a host of other organizations known for being at the forefront for racial justice in the city.
“As the oldest civil rights organization in our nation, it’s imperative that we give voice to this issue and not forget that racism is alive and well as the most discriminated race in our America,” said Betty Williams, Sacramento NAACP Branch President.