Taxpayer Supported Wisconsin DPI Threatens School Counselor’s License After She Denounced Gender Ideology at Public Rally


The News: Attorneys at the Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty (WILL) issued a letter to the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction (DPI) warning the state agency that an attempt to revoke an educator’s license for her remarks at a feminist rally in Madison violate the First Amendment. The Milwaukee Public Schools counselor spoke in opposition to “gender identity ideology” and expressed opposition to “gender ideology” in elementary schools at a rally in April. DPI opened an investigation into whether her educator license should be revoked for “immoral conduct.”

The Quotes: WILL Deputy Counsel, Luke Berg, said, “The state is, quite simply, trying to punish a public-school counselor for her views on gender ideology. This is a classic, clear-cut violation of the First Amendment and the state can expect a federal lawsuit if it proceeds.”

Marissa Darlingh, a school counselor threatened with a DPI investigation, said, “My views on the harms of gender ideology to children are informed by a desire to serve and protect children. That’s why I got into education. I will love and serve every child under my care, no matter what. But I won’t recant under threat from the state.”