CHEYENNE – Laramie County School District 1 has identified at least one student believed to be responsible for creating the racist and anti-gay flyers found at McCormick Junior High last week.
LCSD1 Superintendent Boyd Brown said Tuesday that because the student is a minor, he could not give any details, other than that the student is being disciplined in line with district policy.
Kaycee Cook, the substitute teacher and McCormick Gay Straight Alliance club co-sponsor who was told via email she was no longer welcome at the school after reporting the flyers, will also likely be reinstated at the school, Brown said.
Last Wednesday, flyers reading “it’s great to be straight it’s not OK to be gay,” “black lives only matter because if it weren’t for them who would pick our cotton,” and “Join the KKK,” with “the confederate kid club” in parentheses beneath it were taped to walls and passed out by students, according to students and teachers at the school.
Cook reported the flyers to Wyoming Equality, a local LGBTQ advocacy group, and was informed later that day by Principal Jeff Conine that she had been dismissed as a substitute at the school.
Cook said the flyers were the latest in a chain of bullying targeting McCormick’s GSA students. LCSD1 is investigating those claims.
While the district was not immediately involved in investigating the incident, Brown said after he was given more information, they began looking into it. He said he could not comment on Conine’s response to the incident, citing personnel confidentiality.
“We’ll continue to investigate to see how widespread it is,” he said Tuesday. He said he would not be able to comment on next steps until the investigation was complete.
Following the incident, Brown said principals, guidance counselors and school resource officers met with McCormick GSA members and the school’s black students to “check in” and make sure they felt safe.
McCormick students will also receive a lesson tailored around discriminatory bullying when they return from spring break Monday, Brown said. That lesson is part of the district’s Olweus Bullying Prevention Program, a nationally recognized anti-bullying education program.
The LCSD1 Board of Trustees also is reviewing district policies in response to the incident.
Board Chairwoman Marguerite Herman said while the “immediate remedy” has been made, in that the student has been identified, the board will review how comprehensive the district’s bullying and harassment policies are.
“And then insist they be enforced,” she said.
The finding of the district’s investigation will be confidential, Herman said, but the board will keep the public informed.