EDUCATION + SCHOOLS
School suspends social media accounts, district investigates reason for leaving student out of the yearbook
Jun 15, 2021, 10:11 PM | Updated: Jun 17, 2021, 12:24 pm
LAYTON, Utah — Two photos of a cheer squad from Davis County Shoreline junior high school are lighting up social media for not including a student in the yearbook.
The two photos show the exact same cheer squad from Shoreline Jr. High but one of them includes 8th grader Morgyn Arnold and one of them doesn’t. Morgyn has down syndrome.
Morgyn’s sister Jordyn Poll says the school chose to use the photo in the yearbook without her in.
“The photo without Morgyn was the photo that was chosen to be posted and used,” she told KSL Newsradio.
Jordyn posted those photos to Facebook.
“I don’t know what happened I don’t know that I care to know specific details of where the breakdown was,” she said.
“My heart is broken for my sweet Morgyn to have to experience being left out.”
Poll also said there were more ways Morgyn was excluded.
“Additionally, Morgyn’s name wasn’t even mentioned as a part of the team. She wasn’t included. She spent hours learning dances, showing up to games, and cheering on her school and friends but was left out.”
She also said this has happened before at a different school in the district.
“This is the second time in three years that sweet Morgyn has been left out of the yearbook. Two years ago they didn’t even include her in the class list.”
School suspends social media accounts
After the photo went viral, Shoreline Jr. High issued a statement on social media, but it has since been deleted from social media.
Shauna Lund with the Davis County School District told KSL NewsRadio Shoreline Jr. High’s social media accounts are temporarily suspended due to the summer season.
Part of the reason Shoreline’s Facebook, Instagram and Twitter accounts were suspended, however, is due to the high volume of comments from the cheer photo controversy.
“It has to do with the inability to monitor all the comments and posting that were occurring on those pages,” stated Lund.
District issues apology for school yearbook photo
The Davis County School District’s statement is a similar response to the one issued by the school to KSL.
“We are deeply saddened by the mistake that was made. We are continuing to look at what has occurred and why it occurred. Apologies have been made to the family and we sincerely apologize to others impacted by this error. We will continue to address it with the parents of the student. We also will continue to look at our processes to ensure this does not happen again.”
Lund says the district is still investigating under what circumstances and why the cheer photo omitted Morgyn from the yearbook.
“We want every individual who is in Davis School District schools to feel safe, to feel wanted, and to feel a part of that school. And that’s our ultimate goal,” said Lund.
Even when the investigation is concluded, Lund says it’s unclear if the findings will be made public.
Parents of cheerleaders support Morgyn
Parents of the cheerleaders at Shoreline Jr. High say they are “deeply saddened” by Morgyn, the team’s manager, being left out of the school’s yearbook photo.
Two days after the social media post of Morgyn being left off the yearbook team photo went viral, the parents released a statement Thursday saying the occurrence disregards the process out into making the team inclusive.
“Shoreline Jr. High and the Cheer Team have worked hard to build a culture of acceptance and inclusivity of all students. Sadly, this incident overshadows much of our efforts,” continued the statement.
The statement claims the cheerleaders had zero involvement in the yearbook photo selection of the team, and if they did have a choice, they would have picked the photo with Morygn, the cheer team’s manager, to be included.
In response to national attention and exploding social media comments, the lawyer of the cheer team parents called for all “shaming, bullying and threats against these young cheerleaders stop immediately.”
The release says the school and parents are working to “make things right” with Morgyn and her family to ensure something like this never happens again.
However, Morgyn’s parents noted a similar situation has happened within the Davis Couty School District before.
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