Support for LAist comes from
We Explain L.A.
Stay Connected

Share This

This is an archival story that predates current editorial management.

This archival content was written, edited, and published prior to LAist's acquisition by its current owner, Southern California Public Radio ("SCPR"). Content, such as language choice and subject matter, in archival articles therefore may not align with SCPR's current editorial standards. To learn more about those standards and why we make this distinction, please click here.


Compton Schools Fail To Help Traumatized Students, Lawsuit Says

Support your source for local news!
Today, put a dollar value on the trustworthy reporting you rely on all year long. The local news you read here every day is crafted for you, but right now, we need your help to keep it going. In these uncertain times, your support is even more important. We can't hold those in power accountable and uplift voices from the community without your partnership. Thank you.

A class-action lawsuit alleges that the Compton Unified School District failed to help students who have suffered from violence and other trauma.

The landmark suit could determine whether "complex trauma" should be considered a disability under federal law, requiring school districts to provide special academic and mental health services to struggling students, the L.A. Timesreports. If successful, the suit aims to develop training for staff to better recognize trauma, offer mental support for students and a shift from disciplinary practices for related behavior towards healing.

The lawsuit was filed yesterday by the public interest law firm, Public Counsel and Irell & Manella LLP, on behalf of five student plaintiffs and three teachers. Students named in the suit have undergone a variety of traumatic experiences, including physical and sexual abuse, bullying by teachers and students, and witnessing multiple shootings.

According to the suit, the policies and practices of Compton schools are failing to accommodate the effects of complex trauma, and in some cases, “perpetuate and sometimes create trauma on their own.”

Support for LAist comes from

Compton Unified Supt. Darin Brawley told the L.A. Times that he has not yet seen the lawsuit, but the district plans to review it. Brawley says, "We take very seriously all allegations regarding the quality of education of our students. The district is committed to providing a quality education to all students and will continue to do so."

Below is a video from Public Counsel featuring interviews with some of the student plaintiffs.

Most Read