Cheerleading manager with Down syndrome left out of junior high team yearbook photo

Morgyn Arnold, 14, was the manager for the Shoreline Junior High School cheer squad, her father Jeffrey Arnold advised CNN. She would attend video games and cheer and take part in different actions to spice up college spirit, he mentioned.

She posed for one photo with the team and was seated within the center of the entrance row, her father mentioned. When she received her yearbook on the final day of eighth grade, she realized a unique photo that did not embody her was used, her dad mentioned.

“She walked in and she shows it to me, she says ‘I’m not here, but these are my friends and I love them,'” Jeffrey Arnold advised CNN.

“We are deeply saddened by the mistake that was made. We are continuing to look at what has occurred and why it occurred. Apologies have been made to the family and we sincerely apologize to others impacted by this error. We will continue to address it with the parents of the student. We will continue to look at our processes to ensure this does not happen again,” the assertion mentioned.

Arnold mentioned he’d had constructive conversations with college officers because the yearbook got here out and hopes they will take motion to ensure this does not occur once more to Morgyn or another baby. He mentioned he did not need to level fingers or speak about who was accountable.
“I am optimistic by the empathetic conversations that are starting to be engaged in to help impact change to ensure this doesn’t happen again,” he mentioned.

Since the yearbook got here out, Arnold mentioned the opposite women on the team have rallied round Morgyn.

Arnold mentioned the cheerleaders and their households have needed to deal with some “very malicious hate and disgusting comments” on social media, and he is begging individuals to cease.

“The outpouring and rallying of love by the girls, these cheerleaders, only shows very distinctly that these girls, these cheerleaders were Morgyn’s friends, they were inclusive of her and continue to be and they were just as disappointed to see this,” Arnold mentioned.

“They’re showing, through their example, the proper way to support and help in situations like this and others are making it worse by their hatred and the nastiness of their comments.”

Arnold mentioned Morgyn can be again on the college subsequent 12 months for ninth grade, however mentioned he did not know if she can be concerned with cheerleading.

CNN’s Chris Boyette contributed to this story.

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