A school in Preston, Idaho made national headlines after it was featured as the setting of the movie "Napoleon Dynamite." Now it is capturing national attention once again, but for an entirely different reason. Recently, a teacher at a junior high school has been accused of feeding a live puppy to a hungry snapping turtle in front of students.
The biology teacher is Robert Crosland. He is being investigated following an unusual incident that was first reported in East Idaho News. Apparently, on March 7, he began an after-school animal feeding session which very quickly got out of hand. Many are claiming that the teacher engaged in animal cruelty.
The event reportedly occurred after students had been dismissed from school. In other words, the puppy-feeding wasn't an official school-sanctioned activity. So far, the teacher hasn't been charged and he hasn't been placed on leave. He appears to still be in good standing with both the law and the school.
“A part of any investigation includes determining the best course of action once the facts of the matter have been ascertained. This is not a situation that is easy, nor do we feel it is a measure that can be taken lightly,” said Marc Gee, the Preston School District 201 Superintendent.
“While the district certainly does not condone individual actions that may violate district policy or reasonable expectations of behavior, we hope that any errors in judgment made by a teacher in this instance will not cause us to forget the years of care, effort, and passion the teacher has given to students in Preston School District,” Gee says.
Reports claim that Crosland is a very popular teacher who feeds all sorts of animals to turtles, snakes, and guinea pigs. The classroom is apparently thrilled to see animals fed to these hungry creatures.
But many people are outraged at this incident. USA Today reports that animals rights activists do not think feeding puppies to turtles is an appropriate after-school activity.
"What I have learned in the last four days is disgusting. It is sick. It is sick," said an activist, according to USA Today.
"Allowing children to watch an innocent baby puppy scream because it is being fed to an animal. That is violence. That is not OK," they added.
One student appeared to be defending the action, claiming that the puppy was deformed and was "going to die anyway."
"If it was a deformed puppy that was going to die anyway, Cros(land) is very much circle-of-life," the student added.
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