13-year-old Izzy Dieker of Kansas was recently punished for using "inappropriate language" around her peers while riding the school bus.
According to the school bus driver, the word "lesbian" should be on the list of inappropriate words.
Dieker is an eighth-grader at the Americus School in the North Lyon County District in Kansas. She reportedly lives more than 30 minutes away from the school.
While talking to her friends on the bus, Dieker expressed to her friends she was a lesbian.
After getting off the bus that afternoon, Dieker received a surprise.
"Once I got home, my dad told me he got a call from the school that I was kicked off for saying 'I'm a lesbian'."
Dieker's mother, Tasha Cooper, struggled to get answers from the school administration.
The school would not openly discuss the case, but they also stated the family did not have to follow the bus driver's orders.
"She's 13-years old, and these are adults acting like this towards her."
"We've had talks about other students calling her names, and I expect that because they're repeating what their parents say."
"But for the staff, the people that I trust her with, I was angry."
Fortunately, there were people in the district who showed support for the family.
After hearing about what happened, a teacher in the district, Michael Lanzrath, distributed rainbow pins to the faculty and staff to wear to recognize and represent their support of Dieker.
Lanzrath believes support is vital at this age, and it's something he wished he had received when he was younger.
"I really just wanted to let Izzy know that there are people that absolutely support her."
"Our job as educators is to make sure that all our kids are taken care of."
"To us, all means all."
The support hearteningly radiated out to the Twitterverse, where followers spoke up and expressed their support for Dieker, her personal expression and her continued education.
Some Twitter users said:
@PinkNews Toto, I’ve a feeling we’re not in Kansas anymore. Thankfully— 🏳️🌈Matteo Dettori🇮🇹 (@🏳️🌈Matteo Dettori🇮🇹)1613207810.0
@PinkNews Banning someone because they like the same gender. What is wrong with humanity— Random Thomas Stuff (@Random Thomas Stuff)1613181391.0
@PinkNews So sad. I'm so tired of ignorant people.— Light&Dark (@Light&Dark)1613181994.0
@PinkNews Really hope the bus driver isn’t allowed to drive children to school anymore after this. A little girl sh… https://t.co/mGlH421y21— Sinister Siren 🏳️⚧️🏳️🌈 (@Sinister Siren 🏳️⚧️🏳️🌈)1613324571.0
@PinkNews I’m sorry, what?— Lyndsay Katz 🗳 (@Lyndsay Katz 🗳)1613325247.0
It's unclear if anything will be done about how the bus driver addressed the situation, or how Dieker will go to and from school, but it's certain she has support in her school district and community.