Fifty one year-old Sydney McGee has taught children for the past twenty eight years.  Up until two weeks ago, she enjoyed her job at an elementary school in Frisco, Texas.  She taught art to 5th graders.  Earlier this year she took her students on a field trip to the Dallas Musueum of Art.  Students were exposed to many marvels, from Mondrians to Picassos, but some parents became alarmed when their children reported viewing nude works of art. Three weeks after the trip (Sept. 22) McGee received a memo outlining the reasons for her suspension, which at this point, covers the duration of the school year.

School officials contend that she was subject to dismal for many other reasons as well, but those reasons bear no more justification than that of exposure to nude art.  The memo stated this disciplinary action was necessary because Sydney McGee didn’t display enough student art work, she exposed her students to nude art, she taught from out-dated lesson plans, and her choice of work attire (sandals) was improper.

Public attention has increased over this issue, putting the school’s officials in an unfavorable light.  School officials claim they can’t disclose pertinent information about Sydney McGee due to employee privacy and ethical considerations.  They’ve asked for permission to make her files public.  McGee’s attorney, Rogge Dunn, approves if the district’s superintendent and McGee’s former principal agree to make their personal files a matter of public record as well.  The chances of such reciprocations are slim, as is the likelihood of the suspension holding up in court. 

 

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