Florida art teacher fired after coming out to students
A middle school art teacher claims to have been fired for sharing her sexual orientation in March, just days before the ‘Don’t Say Gay’ bill passed into law.
Art teacher Casey Scott says she was fired from Trafalgar Middle School for discussing her sexuality with her art students.
“A discussion happened in class and because of that, now I’m fired,” Scott told WWBH News.
Scott said some of her students were asking sexuality, leading her to say that she is pansexual.
When prompted as to what that means Scott elaborated, explaining that the term refers to someone who is attracted to a wide variety of people regardless of their sex, gender identity, or sexual orientation.
“I like anyone despite male, female, non-binary, transgender” Scott, who is married to a man, said.
After the conversation, the students began drawing paper flags to represent what they feel is their sexuality and gender identity. Some of the children identified as non-binary, bisexual and gay.
After the class, in a regular practice for school teachers, Scott displayed the children’s art on her classroom door.
However very soon after she claims to have been contacted by school administrators and told her to take the art down.
“They said it would be in the best interest if I got rid of them now,” Scott said. “I went over to the recycling bin. I grabbed all their flags and all the kids were staring at me. And I crumbled their flags in front of them.”
Scott said she was then sent home and later the same day told that she was being released from her non-union contract.
The school was able to dismiss her without cause due to her still being on probation.
Lee County School District told The Independent Scott was fired for not properly following the school curriculum and nothing more: “The district exercised its right to terminate the teacher’s probationary contract because she did not follow the state mandated curriculum.”
However, the school district also shared that they had received complaints from parents.
The firing came just days before Republican governor of Florida Ron DeSantis signed the controversial Parental Rights in Education bill, dubbed ‘Don’t Say Gay’, into law.
The legislation bans the discussion of LGBT+ topics in classrooms and will come into effect 1 July 2022.