Officials at a Virginia middle school are under fire after allegedly excluding a transgender girl from participating in an active-shooter drill with her classmates.
According to Equality Stafford, a local LGBTQ-rights group, the trans student was prevented from entering either the boys or girls locker room with her peers during the drill while teachers debated where she should go.
“The student was forced to watch the adults charged with her care, debate the safest place (for the other students) to have her shelter,” the group wrote on its Facebook page. “During this debate, she was instructed to sit in the gym with a teacher until the drill was complete, away from her peers and identified as different.”
“After some additional debate, she was made to sit in the locker room hall way, by the door away from her peers,” the post continued. "This happened because the child, in addition to being a model student, also happens to be transgender."
Equality Stafford appeared to pin the blame on the county and its school board, not the teachers who carried out the drill.
"It is important to highlight that the child’s PE teachers are not the bad guys," the group wrote. "They are teachers without guidance in a county without guidance for these issues."
Reports of the alleged incident also ignited harsh criticism via social media.
WUSA-TV reports that concerned parents, friends and neighbors are planning to protest at the Stafford County School Board meeting Tuesday evening.
The school's new superintendent has asked for a review of “all protocols and procedures to ensure that all children are treated with dignity and respect," according to a statement released by a spokesperson for the district.