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12-year-old girl sues school over Facebook password

The US pupil says she was forced to reveal her personal profile information after posting comments about staff members.

Image: Martin Keene/PA Wire/Press Association Images

A GIRL AGED 12 has launched legal action against her school in the US, claiming that she was forced to reveal her Facebook password to staff members.

Legal documents filed by the pupil, who is being supported by the American Civil Liberties Union and is named only as RS, say that she was punished after criticising a staff hall monitor on her personal Facebook page.

She was then called in by staff after the mother of a male pupil complained that he and RS had had a Facebook chat about sex, the Courthouse News Service reports.

Staff members at Minnewaska Area Middle School allegedly demanded that the girl give up her Facebook and email passwords, then searched her personal accounts.

“RS was intimidated, frightened, humiliated, and sobbing while she was detained in the small school room,” the complaint states.

The lawsuit states that the girl did not use school property or any school communications equipment to post the messages, according to CNN. The ACLU is arguing that the girl’s civil rights were violated.

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The Minnewaska school district is maintaining that its actions were justified. “The district is confident that once all facts come to light, the district’s conduct will be found to be reasonable and appropriate,” it said.

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Michael Freeman

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