'Online mob' & politics credited with getting teacher in hot water

Friday, May 14, 2021
Chris Woodward (OneNewsNow.com)

Michiana at Clay HS in South BendA pro-life group in Indiana is urging that a teacher be reinstated after being put on paid leave following the group's appearance this week in the teacher's health class.

"This was a typical presentation that we give," Jackie Appleman of Right to Life Michiana explains, referring to her group's participation in a class at Clay High School in South Bend. "It's actually geared towards eighth graders, but we will tailor it towards different audiences – and in this presentation, we share medical and scientific facts about fetal development and abortion procedures."

In addition, Right to Life Michiana shares information about local nonprofits who provide support to women in need.

"Since we were presenting in a public school, we did not pray, we did not talk about religion, nor [did we discuss] the political nature of abortion," Appleman continues. "We stuck very specifically to the facts about fetal development and abortion procedures and then shared those resources available to families and students and women in the community."

As it often does with its events, Right to Life Michiana announced on social media that it would be at Clay High School – and according to Appleman, that appears to have ignited the opposition.

"Some people who do not appreciate our organization got wind of this and shared it and basically incited an online mob to attack the presentation and harass the school," the pro-life group's executive director tells One News Now.

"[This] has all resulted in this teacher getting put on a paid leave while the school and the school corporation investigate what happened."

Todd Cummings, Ph.D., superintendent at South Bend Community School Corporation, did not respond to an email from One News Now seeking comment. However, Cummings did issue the following statement to news outlets:

"The South Bend Community School Corporation is aware and deeply concerned about a group's unauthorized visit to Clay High School's health class yesterday. It is clear that policies and protocols were not followed and we apologize. The teacher has been placed on administrative leave pending an investigation. We want to reassure our students, families, and community that we are taking this matter seriously and are grateful it was brought to our attention. While we are committed to addressing the health and safety needs of all of our students, policies, protocols, multiple perspectives, and parent notifications need to be followed to ensure the continued trust of our families."

After talking with other teachers, Appleman says she was told that many protocols have not been followed this school year. "This teacher wasn't trying to go behind anybody's back," the pro-life spokeswoman shares. "This teacher is truly being targeted for, what I would assume, political reasons."

Appleman adds that Right to Life Michiana has given presentations at least two other times in South Bend community schools and they have never had any kind of complaints from students or parents.

"So, we've just been really shocked by the response and the backlash that we're getting for this," she concludes.

Image above compliments of Right to Life Michiana.


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