AD Suspended Over Trump Skit

January 25, 2017

The Deer Valley (Ariz.) Unified School District placed Boulder Creek High School's principal and athletic director on paid administrative leave after they portrayed President Donald Trump and his counselor, Kellyanne Conway, in a video skit that was posted online.

According to The Arizona Republic, the principal, Lauren Sheahan, and the athletic director, Jay Kopas, had recorded a skit for a faculty meeting, which someone then posted on Facebook. Portraying Conway and Trump, Sheehan and Kopas talked about school news in the video in a satirical manner, such as promising to build a wall around the school to "make Boulder Creek great again.”

The skit was "meant to be light-hearted and entertaining and not disparaging," the district said in a statement. "The District was unaware that it was made and does not endorse it."

A petition calling for Sheahan and Kopas to resign was posted on Change.org, and received about 230 signatures in a day.

"The pair covered a lot in their nearly-seven minute performance including building a wall, a dig at the school board, calling out staff members by name and insulting the student body and their families," an excerpt from the petition read. "The Anthem community is outraged by this video and its insults."

Soon after, a counter-petition asked for Sheahan and Kopas to keep their jobs, and received 500 signatures in a day.

"The situation with the video has been blown out of proportion by a few individuals with a personal vendetta against these two," the petition stated. "BCHS has a difficult time getting highly qualified teachers and coaches to even apply to our school because of our having a reputation of the parents constantly being on a witch hunt and negative."

Sheahan submitted an apology letter, saying the video was in no way meant to be a political statement, but rather as a way to use humor as an attention-grabbing opening to news about the school.

"I recognize that I as the principal of the school, I am held to high standard for professionalism and public scrutiny,” Sheahan wrote. “I regret that this skit has upset some in our community. I am deeply sorry to anyone who was offended. I will continue to celebrate everything wonderful at Boulder Creek high school and in our community."

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