Franklin High School student discussing homophobic bullying interrupted by parent at committee meeting – CBS Boston


FRANKLIN (CBS) – A tense exchange at the Franklin School committee meeting has a student and officials calling for acceptance and tolerance.

Franklin High School senior Mackenzie Atwood is still trying to process Tuesday night’s meeting, as she addressed another speaker about bully-safe classes.

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“I’m gay,” Atwood told the committee Tuesday. “Call me whatever you like about it, I’m personally attacked at school about it.”

About 41 minutes into the taped meeting, a parent in the audience interrupted Atwood and could be heard shouting, “This has to stop. It’s indoctrination.

Atwood burst into tears.

“It’s so crippling because people like to believe that being gay is a choice. It was very moving. “

It was touching because Atwood is openly gay and witnessed the bullying.

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The explosion prompted the chairman of the school committee to intervene, condemning the parent’s actions.

Franklin Schools Superintendent Dr. Sara Ahern sent a letter to parents calling the disruption “appalling” and “unacceptable.”

“It’s sad that we have adults who act this way,” said Laura Atwood, Mackenzie’s mother.

The Franklin family said they believe positive change shouldn’t start at school, but at home.

“I think it’s just that parents and people are more educated about respecting people’s identities,” the high school student said.

Atwood’s mother had a simple message.

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“Teach respect. It is essential.

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