Louisville, Kai. – An Eastern Kentucky school district superintendent says “appropriate disciplinary action has been taken” after photos surfaced where students were dancing on staff laps Tuesday as part of a high school repatriation week.
Sandra Combs, superintendent of the Hazard Independent School, did not mention who was punished.
“Since this is a staffing matter, we are not authorized to disclose any further information on specific disciplines,” the statement said.
Combs said the students were behind a repatriation ceremony that included a “man pageant” and pictures of students dancing on their laps in their underwear were shared on social media.
Background:Kentucky High School staff members receive lap dance from students, photos show
The photos were first posted on the “Hazard High School Athletics” Facebook page, but that post was later deleted. Among them was a picture of a student dancing on the lap of high school principal Donald “Happy” Mobellini, who is also the mayor of Perry County. The screenshots continue to be promoted on social media.
Other photos on the athletics page, which have also been taken down, show female students dressed in “hooters” and students and staff pedaling each other.
Mobellini, the principal and mayor, did not immediately return a request for comment Wednesday.
Earlier Wednesday, Combs told The Courier Journal that the district “has a tradition of excellence and academics and everything we do, but the incident is being investigated and appropriate action will be taken once the investigation is complete.”
“Using this as an instructive moment, we will provide social media training for our students and staff,” Combs wrote in his subsequent statement.
Coombs said a “Student Activity Committee” would be formed to “review all student-led activities” and that all staff would be given further training “on policies and procedures”.
Kentucky Department of Education spokesman Tony Conz Tatman said Wednesday that it was “aware of what happened at Hazard Independent School” and had contacted the superintendent, who told us the incident was under investigation.
Hazard High Hall is one of three schools that make up the Hazard Independent School. According to US News & World Report, it is the only high school in the district and has about 340 students enrolled there. There are 32 staff members listed in the school directory.
Hazard is located in southeastern Kentucky, about three hours from Louisville and two hours from Lexington. The population is about 5,000, according to U.S. census records.