HERNANDO CO., Fla. — A few questions remain after an emotional Hernando County School Board meeting.
Tuesday night’s meeting that got underway just after 6 p.m. went well into the overnight hours past 2 a.m. with more than 100 people requesting to speak.
This all stems from a Disney movie, ‘Strange World,’ being shown in a fifth grade classroom at Winding Waters K-8 in Brooksville. Spectrum Bay News 9 reached out to Hernando County Schools for what comes next following that investigation into the teacher who showed it, Jenna Barbee, a probe prompted by school board member Shannon Rodriguez.
We’re told the direction given going forward is that all movies must be approved by the administrator before they can be shown in the classroom.
But the topic itself was not on Tuesday night’s meeting agenda. As for details of that report, we are still waiting to obtain it. The spokesperson says they are making a request to their professional standards team.
One of those groups who spoke Tuesday night was the Pinellas Classroom Teachers’ Association. President Nancy Velardi says they were there to support their fellow teachers, a decision fueld by the observation that many are leaving the profession altogether.
“I do understand teachers are leaving the profession in droves," said Velardi. "It’s becoming frightening because they don’t want to be stared at and put under a microscope and accused of things that, in the past, were totally normal.”
The board also took a no-confidence vote over Hernando County Superintendent John Stratton. Stratton survived the vote by a count of 3-2, meaning he will remain superintendent of Hernando County Schools.