The principal of Tallahassee Classical School resigned Monday after failing to follow school procedure for notifying parents about a nude Michelangelo statue shown during class, according to multiple reports.
Former Principal Hope Carrasquilla said she was forced to resign or be fired after some parents complained their children were upset by studying Michelangelo’s famous nude “David” statue during a lesson on Renaissance art, the Tallahassee Democrat reported Thursday. The Leon County, Florida, charter school enrolls students from grades K-12.
School board chair Barney Bishop told The Washington Post that Carrasquilla “wasn’t let go because of the artistic nude pictures. We show it every year to our students,” adding that she “voluntarily resigned.” “The problem with this particular issue,” he told the outlet, “was the lack of follow-through on the process.”
Bishop hired Cara Wynn of North Florida Christian School to fill the newly open position, the Democrat reported. Two parents allegedly said Carrasquilla should have notified them that the Renaissance art unit would include material some students may find upsetting. One parent said the lesson was “pornographic,” according to the outlet.
Tallahassee principal fired after parents complain Michelangelo statue of David is ‘pornographic’ https://t.co/x1dgoBTcoE
— Daily Mail US (@DailyMail) March 23, 2023
Tallahassee Classical School reportedly requires students to learn about Renaissance art in the sixth grade, and Michelangelo is widely considered to be one of the greatest and most important Renaissance-era artists in the world. The inclusion of the “David” statue reportedly struck some parents as explicit because it showcases bodily nudity. (RELATED: ‘Lack Of Professionalism’: School Administrator Fired After Reading ‘I Need A New Butt!’ To Second-Graders)
“It saddens me that my time here had to end this way,” Carrasquilla told the outlet.
The school rolled out a new rule in February requiring teachers to notify parents of upcoming lessons that are “potentially controversial,” Bishop said, according to the Democrat.
Tallahassee Classical School formerly held a partnership with Hillsdale College, a conservative college located in Michigan. The affiliation was terminated by Hillsdale in 2022 after the charter school reportedly failed to meet certain improvement standards.
“We aren’t trying to ban the picture,” Bishop told CNN. “We think it’s beautiful, but we are going to make sure the concept of parental rights is supreme in Florida and at our charter school.”