Fifth Grade Georgia Teacher Fired for Reading “Gender Binary” Book to Students

Posted by on August 21, 2023 3:04 am

In an era where the line between education and indoctrination is blurred, it’s reassuring to see communities starting to draw a hard boundary.

School board officials in Cobb County, Georgia, have made a clear statement, putting their foot down against a tide of ‘wokism’ that threatens to sweep through our education system.

But, while their decision is commendable, one can’t help but wonder: is this just a drop in the ocean?

Katie Rinderle, a veteran teacher, might have believed she was doing right by her students by introducing them to the controversial book, “My Shadow is Purple,” but the Cobb County community felt otherwise.

With its premise of “moving beyond the gender binary,” it’s no surprise that parents were alarmed, especially given the impressionable nature of fifth graders.

The swift action against the reading of the book may seem a bit too stringent for some, but when one steps back and assesses the larger picture, it’s clear that the school board is not just dealing with an isolated incident, but a burgeoning trend.

Georgia’s “divisive concepts law” might have been a beacon, a guideline against which to measure classroom activities.

Yet, the tribunal’s initial inclination towards leniency underscores a deeply entrenched issue: is the system rigged in favor of this new wave of ideological teaching?

While it’s heartening to see parents and school boards finally pushing back, the looming question remains—what about the countless children who have already been subjected to such teachings?

The ones who’ve already been exposed to this indoctrination?

The undercurrent of ‘wokism’ is strong, and although we’re beginning to resist, it feels like paddling upstream.

The sentiment of the parent who commented, “I don’t want the teachers indoctrinating him. I want the parents to be parents and the teachers to teach,” resonates profoundly.

The classroom should be a neutral space, free from ideological propaganda, where children learn, grow, and form their beliefs without undue influence.

Cobb County’s decision is a step in the right direction, but the journey against this tidal wave of polarizing teachings has only just begun.

The battle rages on.

Breitbart has an excellent breakdown of what happened:

School board officials in Cobb County, Georgia, voted four to three on Thursday to fire a teacher who read a book to fifth graders about “moving beyond the gender binary.”

Katie Rinderle was a veteran teacher in the district who read the book titled “My Shadow is Purple” to the young students, WSB-TV reported Friday.

The firing happened after a tribunal proceeding where leaders discussed if she would retain or lose her instructor’s position.

“The tribunal determined that she did violate part of Georgia’s new divisive concepts law, but they recommended that she be able to keep her job,” the report said, adding Rinderle claimed the book was “appropriate” for the students because its main theme is about being true to oneself.

The book’s description on Amazon says it is “a heartwarming and inspiring book about being true to yourself and moving beyond the gender binary, by the bestselling author of My Shadow Is Pink.”

In March, a parent reportedly complained about the teacher reading the book to the children. Rinderle was then removed from her class.


The website Book Reviews by a Conservative Teacher recently highlighted the title, telling the site’s readers it “promotes the non-binary lifestyle and no child should read this book. I can’t imagine how confusing this nonsense would be for kids.”

One parent told 11 Alive, “I don’t want the teachers indoctrinating him. I want the parents to be parents and the teachers to teach. That’s it.”

It’s no secret that our education system faces immense challenges.

As international educational rankings are released and American students struggle to keep pace, it’s become evident that our priorities need a major overhaul.

While there’s certainly a place and time for discussions on social issues, are elementary classrooms the appropriate setting?

Particularly when such discussions are not part of the established curriculum and could potentially divert valuable time from critical subjects like English, Math, and Science?

The Cobb County School Board of Education’s decision to uphold Rinderle’s termination underscores the urgency of this debate.

Their statement emphasizes the imperative of “keeping our classrooms focused on teaching, learning, and opportunities for success for students.”

This is, after all, the crux of the matter.

In a rapidly evolving global landscape, American children deserve an education that equips them with the skills and knowledge they need to succeed.

The Washington Post confirms:

A decision to fire an elementary school teacher from Georgia has been upheld, after she read a children’s book on gender identity to her fifth-grade class earlier this year.

The Cobb County School Board of Education voted 4-3 along party lines to uphold Katie Rinderle’s termination, overruling a tribunal that had said she should not be fired. “The district is pleased that this difficult issue has concluded; we are very serious about keeping our classrooms focused on teaching, learning, and opportunities for success for students,” the board of education said in a statement Friday.

Rinderle worked at Due West Elementary School, in Marietta, Ga., and read the storybook “My Shadow Is Purple” by Australian author Scott Stuart to her class in March.

The picture-book is about a child who reflects on his mother’s shadow being “as pink as a blossoming cherry” and his father’s shadow that’s “blue as a berry,” and says their shadow is purple. Some parents complained, although Rinderle said others had also expressed their support for the lesson.

The intrusion of polarizing subjects, especially when not embedded within a broader, well-considered educational strategy, only serves to muddy the waters.

While it’s essential to nurture open-mindedness and inclusivity, the timing and place for these lessons matter.

Before we immerse young minds in the complexities of social debates, let’s ensure they have a strong foundation in the basics.

After all, without a grounding in core subjects, the discussions, no matter how valuable, may just be building on shaky ground.

Let’s get back to the basics.

Let’s make sure that our kids get a proper education!