Achille Classes Canceled After Online Threats Made Toward Transgender Student
ACHILLE, OK. - Schools in Achille are taking safety precautions after several community members published controversial comments on Facebook about a transgender student.
Superintendent Rick Beene says the comments from some parents don’t reflect the interactions between students.
“There were no problems at school with the kids. There were reports of bullying, totally false. Our kids have a great relationship with each other,” Beene said.
This big problem for Achille Schools actually started off campus, in a private Facebook group run independently by parents.
According to those involved, one user took to Facebook, complaining about a transgender student at the middle school.
That post spread into a public Facebook forum, where several adults threatened or alluded to threats toward the child.
The violent comments went viral, shared hundreds of times throughout the weekend.
Beene says along with law enforcement, the decision to close school Monday and Tuesday for safety.
“Achille School and the administration take the safety of every student very serious,” Beene said.
Beene says he has the same passion about acceptance.
The superintendent says the district strives to accept and care for all students equally regardless of lifestyle.
“It’s 2018. We know there are all kinds of special populations,” Beene said.
According to Beene, Achille Police and the Bryan County Sheriff expressed concerns about outside groups coming to town and clashing.
The district is hiring an extra resource officer to help keep students safe, and the victim’s family has filed a protective order against Burney Crenshaw.
Crenshaw was tagged on the original post, and sources say he had actively campaigned against the child.
Superintendent Beene says he is humiliated to have Achille associated with the adult’s comments, but says the student is safe and accepted at school.
“Her only concern, she told us, was the parent, the people that are threatening her,” Beene said of the student’s mother.
School will resume Wednesday, according to staff.