Lakeshore Public School teacher faces backlash for Facebook post

Published: Mar. 12, 2021 at 6:18 PM EST
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STEVENSVILLE, Mich. (WNDU) -Tonight we’re digging deeper after a teacher’s Facebook post upsets people in the Lakeshore High School community.

Several students and parents reached out to 16 News Now saying the teacher’s comments are insensitive to the LGBTQ+ community.

16 News Now spoke with the Lakeshore Public School Superintendent and he says he’s angry about the Facebook post too.

He says the school district took swift and severe action to discipline the teacher.

This is that Facebook post from Lakeshore High School art teacher Holly Davis.

She said “Teachers at Lakeshore High School no longer have a ‘staff’ bathroom because of the one or two transgender students in the building that ‘need’ their own bathroom...apparently their bathroom is more important than the teachers that teach them.”

The school’s superintendent says the words in Davis’ post undermine the school’s mission of putting students first.

“We’re behind our students 100%, and to have a single employee that makes a statement that begins to undermine what we’re doing here as a group and as a community to support our students is very frustrating. I guess in the simplest terms, I’m angry about it,” said  Lakeshore Public Schools Superintendent Phil Freeman.

Freeman also clarified that teachers still have access to their own staff bathrooms.

“We had a couple of single-stall bathrooms that were at one-time staff bathrooms that we just made into single-stall use bathrooms for anybody who felt more comfortable using a single-stall restroom. They have access to their own staff bathrooms--they have access to these bathrooms,” he said.

Freeman didn’t specify what action the school took with Davis, but he says it was swift and severe.

One student tells me how hurtful this post is for LGBTQ+ students.

“What Ms. Davis doesn’t seem to understand is that there’s a lot of kids who aren’t out as trans. So she thinks there’s one or two trans students. I know so many because she’s a teacher that students don’t trust,” said Lakeshore High School Senior & GSA President Megan Hollerbach.

16 News Now reached out to Davis by email and on Facebook multiple times for comment. We are still waiting on her response.

Here’s Lakeshore’s full response about the Facebook post from their website:

This morning, the District was made aware of a social media post by one of our staff members that questioned the District’s decision to repurpose two single stall staff bathrooms at Lakeshore High School to gender neutral, fully accessible units. The post questions this decision and inappropriately singles out transgender students as the reason. First and foremost, let us say, YES! This decision was made to support our transgender students - along with every other student, staff and visitor in our schools. It demonstrates our commitment to accessibility and support for everyone.

As a District, we object wholeheartedly with the content of the staff member’s post. The insensitive remarks expressed by the teacher in this post do not reflect the values of Lakeshore Public Schools and are not acceptable in any manner or form. We assure you that the action taken in this matter will be swift and appropriate.

We are saddened that the work that we have done hand-in-hand with our LGBTQ students and their families to create an accepting and supportive environment are now undermined and damaged so severely by a single voice. We recognize that transgender and gender nonconforming students are often marginalized and face unfortunate obstacles within our school walls and in the community at large. The District is committed to mending the wounds created through this insensitive and hurtful post and will work with our students and their families to assure that a mantra of acceptance and support continues to be at the foundation of our work.

Philip Freeman, Superintendent; Dr. Jason Beckrow, School Board President

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