Connecticut school shows cartoon to second graders of man with erection standing over 'sad' girl
'Lesson on social and emotional learning' angers parents. Superintendent admits it was 'not appropriate'
Second graders in Greenwich, Connecticut, were shown an animated video that displays the silhouette of a man with a graphic, full erection standing over what has been described as a "sad" girl during a "lesson on social and emotional learning."
The New York Post reported that the kids were shown a cartoon titled, "Alfred Jr. & Shadow: A Short Story About Being Scared," during a virtual class that the Greenwich Free Press said was "a lesson on social and emotional learning."
The Free Press reported:
The description of the video says, "All children are normalscared, but what do children who are embarrassedscared or painfulscared need?"
It explains that The Alfred Jr. & Shadow – A Short Story about Being Scared was an educational film for children aged 6-14 years. The children learn about different ways of being scared, what they need when they are scared, and suggestions for actions. Adults also get some tips on how to meet a child who is scared.
At one point in the video, the narrator says, "Some children are afraid that their mom and dad will beat them, or that their parents will fight. Other children have experienced an adult touching or putting their penis in the child's private parts or mouth."
As the voiceover speaks, the image displayed for several seconds on the screen is what The Washington Examiner called "a dejected-looking child" next to "a sexually aroused silhouetted man."
What did one parent say?
Greenwich parent and Newsmax host Carl Higbie tweeted, "In my hometown, in my daughters age group class of second grade, they showed an animated video today of a man with an ERECTION standing over a child!!!!! this is not OK!!!!"
Higbie told the Free Press that he was "relieved" that his own second grader did not see the film, but that several other "disgusted" parents had reached out to him to express their outrage.
"That somebody thought this video was acceptable for second graders was abhorrent," he told the outlet.
Greenwich Schools Superintendent Dr. Toni Jones addressed the controversial video in an email to second-grade families, acknowledging, "Around the midway point in the video there is reference to situations in which children may become afraid, including being afraid of abuse, both physical and sexual. The content at this point in the video was not appropriate for our GPS second grade classrooms."
According to the Free Press, she added "that the content was instead likely meant for a private therapy session for children who have experienced trauma."
The Greenwich School District did not immediately respond to requests from The Examiner or The Post.