AMELIA, Ohio - Was a 12-year-old girl kicked off a cheerleading squad because of a disability?
A West Clermont father claims that happened to his daughter. While the school district says it has launched an investigation, Allen Relthford has taken to social media to share his story.
“I am not OK with my daughter being disrespected,” Relthford said on a Facebook video that has been shared and viewed more than 20,000 times.
Relthford accuses the cheerleading coach of lying and harassing him and her daughter Natalie, who has cerebral palsy.
After the seventh grader was passed over for tryouts last year, she was guaranteed a spot on the basketball cheerleading squad this school year, Relthford said. But before the season began, she was demoted to being a supporter of the team, Natalie's dad said.
And now he says she's the only girl on the team who will be required to try out to get on the cheerleading squad.
Natalie’s dad feels his daughter is being singled out unfairly.
“They said this is going to be a wonderful experience, that they were going to embrace my daughter. But since this all began, it’s been a nightmare,” Relthford said.
The school's PR department says there are two sides to every story and, while they are not allowed to discuss specifics, they are taking the matter very seriously.
Meanwhile, Relthford is demanding an apology and calling for the jobs of the cheerleading coach and athletic director.