A transgender teacher in Florida has been removed from the classroom following a reported comment about wanting to shoot students.
The teacher was removed from the Hernando School District (HSD) after allegedly making the comment about wanting to shoot students due to their lack of performance. The teacher had recently learned of a post on social media in which their sexual orientation was being discussed negatively, which reportedly led to the comment.
The teacher was sent to the school guidance counselor’s office on March 24 after claiming to be having “bad thoughts” and making “concerning comments about self-harm.” The Florida Department of Education released a statement Friday indicating that the teacher has been removed from the classroom.
The Hernando County Sheriff’s Office (HCSO) quickly responded to the incident by removing three firearms and ammunition from the teacher’s home that same day.
Parents have accused the school district of withholding information from them due to alleged discrepancies in what allegedly happened. The school district said in a letter to parents on Thursday that the investigation from the Hernando County Sheriff’s Office revealed details “not previously known by the school district” that “appear to conflict with information gathered at the time of the incident.”
While some parents have accused the school district of targeting the teacher due to their being transgender, many parents have disagreed, stating that regardless of the gender of the teacher, the comment was concerning and should be taken seriously.
“Doesn’t matter whether they’re white, black, purple, green or a rhinoceros,” one father said. “I’m glad she’s a great teacher. She made a threat.”
The school district has said that the pending investigation may lead to the consideration of additional safeguards.
This incident is yet another reminder of the importance of monitoring the mental health of students, teachers, and school staff alike. While mental health issues are often overlooked, it is crucial that schools ensure that those who may be struggling to receive the help and support they need in order to prevent similar incidents from occurring in the future.
Please see the Florida Department of Education’s statement below on a school safety situation in Hernando County. pic.twitter.com/gBwNpcf4H6
— Florida Department of Education (@EducationFL) April 14, 2023