Frederick mother angry, calling for change after teacher’s alleged anti-LGBT remarks

Published: Mar. 29, 2021 at 6:13 PM CDT
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FREDERICK, Okla. (TNN) - A Frederick mother is outraged and calling for action after her daughter said a teacher and some students made anti-LGBT comments in class last week.

Dawn Snodgrass said when she got the call from her daughter, she drove to Frederick Middle School asking to speak with the principal and counselor.

“I was upset,” Snodgrass said. “I couldn’t form thoughts. I couldn’t speak. I was shaking. I was crying. Even in the principal’s office, I was crying.”

In 12-year-old Karagyn’s class, a political discussion started about the transgender and homosexual community and reportedly ended with the teacher calling their lifestyles “sinful.”

“I feel that my daughter was bullied in a sense because she is part of the LGBTQ community,” Snodgrass said. “Small town Oklahoma schools, a lot of the time they do talk about religion. The counselor had brought up that even in her counseling sessions, she talks about religion and uses it as a reference and that’s not okay either.”

Karagyn identifies as pansexual, meaning gender is not a determining factor in her attraction to others.

She said it’s not uncommon for these conversations to come up in class. This one hurt and even scared her a little.

“There’s multiple kids in the classroom that have family members or friends or someone - themselves - a part of the community as well, so they were probably hurt by this as well,” Snodgrass said.

Superintendent Shannon Vanderburg said he couldn’t share any details about the investigation with 7NEWS.

“There were some issues brought to us by a parent last week, and we’ve conducted an investigation, and we will meet with the parent tomorrow to go over the details of that investigation and what we found and look for ways to move forward,” Vanderburg said.

Snodgrass said when the principal called her, he confirmed that it did happen.

“The principal called me back and said that he talked to some students,” Snodgrass said. “The story remained the same throughout. That that is what happened and he said he talked to the teacher and she’s horrified and apologized. I told him that’s not really enough. Something else needs to happen.”

Superintendent Vanderburg did say that if it happened, it’s not acceptable behavior.

“We don’t ever want that to happen here,” Vanderburg said. “We always strive to provide a school where all kids are welcome who can pursue their education unimpeded.”

Snodgrass said she has a few non-negotiables when she meets with school officials.

First and foremost, she wants her daughter removed from the teacher’s class and an apology issued to the entire student body.

“I would hope that policies are put into place moving forward to protect not only the LGBTQ community, but the student body as a whole,” Snodgrass said. “I mean, from all religious backgrounds, all varying viewpoints.”

She’s prepared to take the issue further if she needs to.

Snodgrass is meeting with Frederick Public School officials on Tuesday to discuss the investigation.

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