A teacher is under investigation by the Florida Department of Education (DOE) after showing a Disney film that featured an LGBT+ character.
Fifth-grade teacher Jenna Barbee faces accusations of indoctrination for showing Strange World to the class. The film features Ethan, an openly gay character – though Jenna said this had nothing to do with her decision to show the film. Instead, she said it was simply intended for a "brain break" and related to what the children were learning about.
Jenna has since taken to TikTok to share her "truth" in the matter, explaining: "I thought it would be a great time to give them a brain break by showing a movie that related to what we were learning about in school."
When a parent, who also serves as a board member, heard about the film choice, she reported Jenna to the Florida DOE.
Jenna said: "I understood her perspective, that she really does not want this shown at her house. I never saw that perspective before so I didn’t think it was a big deal but seeing how upset she was, I told her, ‘I understand my lesson’."
"I am not and never would indoctrinate anyone to follow my beliefs," Jenna continued. "I will however always be a safe person to come to that spreads the message of kindness, positivity and compassion for everyone."
I am the teacher. Here is the truth. #indoctrination #disneymovie #disney #strangeworld #viraltweet
Jenna's TikTok was soon inundated with support from viewers, with one writing: "As an ex-Floridian, thank you so much for standing up for your kids. Florida is not the same anymore from when I was a kid."
"I’m proud of you and I thank you for standing up," another wrote. "If it had to happen to anyone I’m glad it happened to someone so strong, intelligent, and kind."
A third added: "Proud of you young teachers. The board member needs a lesson in kindness. Sorry your situation as a professional has become untenable"
Meanwhile, another TikToker commented: "Good for you! So proud of you! You are so articulate and spot on with your explanation! Stay strong girl!"
Indy100 reached out to the Florida Department of Education for comment.
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