In a recent development, the Florida Department of Education has launched an investigation into classroom activities in Hernando County Schools, prompting concerns among parents.
The department is now requesting permission from parents to interview their children as part of an ongoing inquiry.
This move comes after fifth-grade teacher Jenna Barbee showed the movie “Strange World” to her students without obtaining approval from the district.
“Strange World” is a film that prominently features a teenage character.
While the movie itself may not seem inappropriate, it has raised questions about the content being presented to students without proper authorization.
School board member Shannon Rodriguez reported the incident to the state, emphasizing the need for all films to be approved by school leadership before being shown to students.
Barbee admitted to not following this protocol, stating that she didn’t anticipate any issues as the movie carried a PG rating.
The controversy surrounding this incident has sparked concerns among parents about the impact on their children’s education.
Some worry that the investigation may affect LGBTQ students negatively, given the theme of the movie involving a boy’s feelings for another boy.
Teachers are also expressing their concerns about how this situation may create an unwelcoming environment for LGBTQ students, asserting that their schools have always embraced inclusivity.
Barbee, the teacher at the center of the investigation, has not yet responded to requests for comment.
The school district is conducting its own investigation to determine if further action is necessary.
In the meantime, the district has informed all parents that “Strange World” will no longer be shown in classrooms.
The Florida Department of Education’s inquiry aims to shed light on the incident and ensure that proper procedures are followed regarding instructional materials used in schools.
As this investigation unfolds, parents, educators, and community members eagerly await further updates regarding the outcome and any potential measures that may be taken to address the concerns raised by this incident.