PETA Files Complaint With State Board of Education, Calls On School to Do Away With Cruel Classroom Dissections
For Immediate Release:
November 4, 2015
Tasgola Bruner 202-483-7382
Tampa, Fla. – Following a video that was posted to Vine showing a science teacher at Sickles High School juggling dead frogs slated to be dissected and months of unsuccessful attempts to engage with the district, PETA is calling on the state’s department of education and board of education to end classroom dissection.
In the disturbing video—which was posted online this spring—a teacher can be seen juggling three frogs in front of the class, calling them “flying frogs,” while his students watch and laugh. As he drops one of the frogs, a student can be heard yelling, “You suck!” while others continue to laugh loudly.
PETA’s staff biology teacher met with the Hillsborough Board of Education this summer and was promised that action would be taken, but district science educators have now failed to show up to two scheduled meetings to discuss replacing dissection with modern non-animal methods.
In a new letter to state officials, PETA points out that the teacher’s behavior exhibited in the video violates state education guidelines as well as the policies of the National Science Teachers Association and the National Association of Biology Teachers, which state that teachers should treat animals respectfully and ethically.
“Frogs used for dissection are torn away from their homes in the wild and killed—and in classrooms like this one, students are taught that these abused animals are props and inanimate laboratory tools to be mocked, mutilated, and discarded,” says PETA Director of Laboratory Investigations Justin Goodman. “PETA is calling on the state to teach students to respect life and science—and it can start by replacing cruel and archaic animal dissection with humane and more effective non-animal teaching methods.”
Every year in the U.S., an estimated 10 million animals are killed for dissection. Many come from biological supply houses, which breed animals or obtain them from animal shelters or the wild. Studies show that classroom animal dissection can traumatize students and foster callousness toward animals. Non-animal methods, such as interactive computer programs, have been shown to teach biology better than dissection and are less expensive. The National Science Teachers Association endorses the use of modern non-animal methods as replacements for dissection.
PETA’s correspondence with district administrators and a broadcast-quality copy of the video are available upon request. For more information, please visit PETA.org/Dissection.