Bigoted Parents Support Students Who Cyberbullied Gay Teacher So Badly She Had to Take Mental Health Leave
She never discussed her sexuality with her students – although there is no reason why she should not have. But she did post a photo of her and her partner to Instagram, and after it was discovered, that's when the cyberbullying began.
Amy Estes, a California middle school teacher says she went to the administrators asking for help and support, but got none. She says they ignored the problem, saying it was "drama," and would "blow over."
"Estes, who has taught English at Spring View Middle School in Rocklin for five years, considered herself well-liked before the barrage of online taunts, nasty statements and memes began at the beginning of the school year," The Sacramento Bee reports.
The school not only refused to step in, but told her she should not discuss her sexuality as a means of getting the attacks to stop unless it was absolutely necessary.
"At the recommendation of her bosses, Estes tried to talk to the student she was told was the ringleader. He denied any wrongdoing," the paper says. "She said she asked the school to investigate the social media posts and to talk to the students involved. She was told the school does not monitor what is being said on the internet. Estes says such monitoring has been done when students were bullying one another."
Estes, it turns out, had helped to create the school's anti-bullying curriculum, so she was familiar with ways to handle bullying.
She "said she met with the principal again. 'I think we need to do better,' Estes said she told her. 'I don’t feel supported, and we’ve talked about this since September and still nothing.'"
The principal called it a teachable moment and said she wasn't sure what Estes wanted school officials to do.
"What I wanted from my administration was to utilize the discipline matrix that I worked hard to establish," said Estes, who helped build the anti-bullying curriculum used with students. "If there is hate speech, students are given a consequence – detention or other consequences. Speaking so hatefully deserved more than a teachable moment."
It didn't get better.
"She assigned her students a positive lesson: Write a report about how you would create a utopia and give a class presentation. When it was the girl's turn, she said her utopia would not include gay marriage because it was bad. Her paper used a derogatory word to describe gay people, among other inflammatory things, Estes said.
The students reacted with clapping and cheers, obviously looking to her for reaction, Estes said.
And that was her breaking point.
After that, some parents got involved – to support the students who were bullying Estes.
WFMY reports one of the parents of Estes' students says, "we back the school district 100 percent. She shouldn't have her sexual preferences pushed on you and our religious views shouldn't be pushed on anybody else."
Parents whose daughter had the Rocklin teacher who went on mental health leave after being bullied by students when… https://t.co/65CZkKUIJO— Liz Kreutz (@Liz Kreutz)1528855435.0