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Des Moines Public Schools announced a person called Ian Roberts as its new superintendent. Roberts was superintendent of Millcreek Township School District in Erie, PA previously.

Less than a month ago, Roberts made national news.

A high school in the district allowed a gay-straight alliance spirit week with various theme days. One of those days was “Dress in Drag” day.

“This does not belong in school, but apparently Millcreek Township School District feels it does seeing that these flyers are hung up on bulletins, outside the office and throughout the schools,” one person from the area posted to social media. “I thought school was for learning, not gay-straight alliance spirit week?”

Othere theme days, as you can see, include “Rainbow Day,” “Color Wars,” “Lesbian Pride” and “Royalty Day.”

According to Erie News Now, flyers promoting the week were posted throughout McDowell High School.

For “Dress In Drag,” students were encouraged to be their own “drag queen.”

Roberts, the new Des Moines Public School superintendent, defended the week.

“This flyer was created by a student-led organization at our high school called GSA,” Roberts wrote. “Participation is only being encouraged by the student group and is solely the choice of our students whether they participate in the student organization’s event or not.”

Roberts wrote the group’s existence and approved activities are covered under the Equal Access Act of 1984.

He wrote students are allowed the “freedom of expression as long as such freedoms are not infringing on the rights of other students or creating an unsafe environment at the school.”

“In this instance, we remain committed to ensuring an inclusive learning environment here at Millcreek Township School District, and the GSA students are allowed to enjoy these activities during their planned spirit week,” Roberts wrote.

Here were some of the reactions to his letter:


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