BECKER, MN — (03-14-22) — The Becker School District has drawn the anger and outrage from students and teachers over their willingness to hear an anti-LGBT presentation.
At a board meeting for the Becker School District earlier this month, it was confirmed that a second presentation would be made on March 14 by the Minnesota Child Protection League (MNCPL), the organization established by anti-LGBT activists, according to the Southern Poverty Law Center.
Becker High School social studies teacher and Gay Straight Alliance advisor Heather Abrahamson told the St. Cloud Times, “The response from the kids is they were glad to have OutFront, but the response from the school board then was right away, they needed to hear the other side of this. I don’t understand how you could think there’s another side to human rights, but they claim that there is.” said Abrahamson.
Last year, anti-LGBT activists posted a false story on the Becker community Facebook page that pride flags were going to replace U.S. flags in the school. Although that claim was false, the post generated thousands of comments, most of which included anti-LGBTQ+ sentiment and hate speech.
When several Becker High School students began sharing screenshots of another student’s anti-LGBTQ+ comments made on the post to their friends and followers, they were informed by local police to take them down “or risk civil and/or criminal charges,” according to a June ACLU of Minnesota letter that was addressed to school board members.
LGBTQ students began skipping school because they did not feel safe after the anti-LGBT posts.
Faculty told the St. Cloud Times that school administrators began to take the safety of LGBTQ+ students more seriously following a walkout organized after the police killing of Daunte Wright in Minnesota’s Brooklyn Center.
But after the school board’s decision to hear a presentation by the MNCPL, students and staff said they felt like school officials perhaps did not care as much as they pretended to be.
Administrators “seem super supportive and seem like they want the best for us” in meetings with GSA students, Becker High School Senior Nick Roehl told the St. Cloud Times, “but then when it really comes down to it, they’re not willing to do what we need.” said Roehl.
Article by: Paul Goldberg, Staff Writer
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