A Florida fifth-grade teacher justified her decision on CNN to show her students an LGBT-themed Disney movie claiming that parents who complained about it are “ignorant.”
Journalist and Grabien founder Tom Elliott tweeted a clip of CNN’s interview Monday night with Jenna Barbee, a fifth-grade teacher at Winding Waters School, a K-8 school in the Hernando County district, who is under investigation over possible violation of Florida’s Parental Rights in Education law, recently expanded to prohibit classroom instruction in sexual orientation and gender identity in all grades from K-12, rather than only K-3.
Florida 5th grade teacher who showed students an LGBT-themed Disney movie: "Ignorant" of parents to complain.
Your "rights as a parent, those rights are gone when your child is in the public school system" pic.twitter.com/YkJbaPQOPk
— Tom Elliott (@tomselliott) May 16, 2023
Barbee said she showed the Disney film Strange World to her students as they were completing their standardized testing, CNN reported, but told the network’s Alisyn Camerota she was not aware the Parental Rights in Education law had been expanded to her grade level.
“I had no idea whatsoever that this was such a big deal,” Barbee said.
In the video clip, Shannon Rodriguez, a parent of one of Barbee’s students, is heard telling the school board:
It is not a teacher’s job to impose their beliefs upon a child – religious, sexual orientation, gender identity, any of the above. But allowing movies such as this assists teachers in opening a door, and please hear me, they assist teachers in opening a door for conversations that have no place in our classrooms.
“What these parents are missing is they’re not in the school system,” Barbee said. “That just shows me that she’s ignorant,” she added about Rodriguez.
“These conversations, these doors – they’re open – these students have one-to-one devices,” the teacher continued. “The amount of things that they’re able to pull up that we have to shut down … these ‘conversations,’ these ‘doors”’that she’s talking about … that’s telling me I’m stripping the rights of a parent – those rights are gone when your child is in the public school system, because there are students talking about these things. It’s where they get 90% of their socialization for the day, and we can’t shut down every conversation every child has.”
In comments to The Star News Network, Nicole Neily, founder and president of Parents Defending Education (PDE), questioned the judgment of using classroom time to show cartoon movies with a social justice agenda.
“In a district where only 56 percent of elementary school students are proficient in math and 52 percent of children are proficient in reading, perhaps classroom time would be better spent in focusing on mastering the basics and not trying to covertly introduce social topics through cartoon movies,” Neily said.
“This teacher’s comments show a fundamental misunderstanding of the relationship between parents and schools,” added Erika Sanzi, PDE director of outreach. “Parents do not lose their rights when a child attends school.”
Barbee’s dismissal of parental rights when children attend public schools comes as White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre echoed those of Joe Biden’s on the topic of parents’ rights to make medical decisions for their children.
American children, Jean-Pierre said, “belong to all of us” in terms of body-mutilating gender-affirming medical treatments for children.
At the 2023 GLAAD Media Awards, Jean-Pierre said that American children “belong to all of us” in the context of gender-altering treatments and so-called “gender-affirming care” for children.
Jean-Pierre’s comments follow those of Biden, who said, “There’s no such thing as someone else’s child. Our nation’s children are all our children.”
This follows President Biden saying: “there’s no such thing as someone else’s children. They’re all our children.”
No they are absolutely not.
No parent wants to hear the government tell them their kids are not theirs. But that’s what they’re doing.pic.twitter.com/yzeJnJakhe
— Protect Women Ohio (@ProtectWomenOH) May 17, 2023
CatholicVote responded to these comments by stating, “Wrong. These kids belong to their parents — not you. From schools, to ballot proposals, to gender counseling, the Biden admin is working to destroy the role of parents at every turn.”
Wrong. These kids belong to their parents — not you. From schools, to ballot proposals, to gender counseling, the Biden admin is working to destroy the role of parents at every turn. https://t.co/PgPZHgfYNM
— CatholicVote (@CatholicVote) May 17, 2023
Dr. Stanley Goldfarb, chairman of Do No Harm, said in a statement that Jean-Pierre “is correct that the state plays an important role regarding children. That role is to protect children from child abuse and from their own inability to make good judgments.”
“That is why children cannot drive, cannot smoke, and cannot vote,” Goldfarb added. “The idea that children can make informed judgments about altering their body and their reproductive future suggests that adults, particularly those in healthcare, who support so-called gender-affirming care, are betraying these children.”
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Susan Berry, PhD, is national education editor at The Star News Network. Email tips to [email protected]
Photo “Florida Teacher” by Tom Elliott.
One Thought to “Florida Fifth-Grade Teacher Scolds Parents: ‘Your Rights Are Gone When Your Child Is In the Public School System’”
This woman has lost her sense – if she ever had any.