HERNANDO COUNTY, Fla. — Hernando County parents and school board officials are expected to hear the results of a Florida Department of Education investigation at Tuesday night’s school board meeting into a former teacher who showed a Disney movie that contained a gay character.
The PG-rated movie “Strange World" was shown to a fifth-grade class at Winding Waters K-8 in Brooksville, and the child of a school board member raised a concern about it to her mother.
Teacher Jenna Barbee has accused school board member Shannon Rodriguez of reporting her to the state because the movie she showed to her fifth-grade class included an openly gay character. She showed the movie to the class after some state exams were taken.
Barbee, who has since resigned, said the movie was shown because it related to the curriculum and she had permission slips to show PG movies to her class.
An initial report from the county acknowledges those permission slips but said she didn't get the proper approval to show the movie.
This story has gained national attention, with Barbee’s comments on the situation going viral on TikTok.
It inspired a Change.org petition to remove the school board member from the board.
The Hernando County school board anticipates that the meeting will draw such large crowds that they changed the venue to Hernando High School.
Tuesday’s noontime workshop and regular board meeting will both be held at the Hernando High School’s Performing Arts Center.
With additional security measures, law enforcement and school guardians are present.