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Teacher with a fear of children sues Ohio school district

The 61-year-old woman says her phobia was triggered when she began teaching younger children.

A FORMER HGH school teacher is suing the Ohio school district where she used to work, saying its administrators discriminated against her because she has a rare phobia: a fear of young children.

Sixty-one-year-old Maria Waltherr-Willard had been teaching Spanish and French at Mariemont High School in Cincinnati since 1976.

She was transferred to the district’s middle school in 2009. She says the younger students triggered her phobia, caused her blood pressure to soar and forced her to retire.

Her lawsuit against the district seeks unspecified monetary damages.

An attorney for the school district says that Waltherr-Willard was transferred because the French program at the high school was being turned into an online one and that the middle school needed a Spanish teacher.

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