Students Jump-Roping With Intestines Go Viral

A high school in Texas is the subject of controversy now that a Snapchat video of students jump-roping with cat intestines has gone viral. The anatomy class of 11th and 12th grade students was dissecting cats during a lesson earlier this month when one of the students filmed part of it, in a manner that was taken out of context from the dissection itself. In light of the video sparking outrage online, Aubrey Chancellor, a spokesperson for the North East Independent School District, says that the district does not plan to take any disciplinary action.

"This was not meant to be disrespectful or degrading. In fact, the students and the teacher are very upset it’s being portrayed that way," wrote NEISD spokeswoman Aubrey Chancellor in an email to Bustle. "The idea of the lesson was to demonstrate the tensile strength of the organ. The teacher participated in the same lesson during her college courses. However, we understand that best practices change over time and we believe there is a more appropriate way to demonstrate the concept."

Since the incident occurred, the video has gained a lot of traction online, particularly from people upset with the handling of the dissection. In particular it has attracted the attention of activists and animal rights groups, including PETA. "Studies show that classroom animal dissection can foster callousness toward living beings, and these gruesome 'jump rope' videos are a particularly sad example," said Marta Holmberg, PETA Senior Director of Youth Outreach and Campaigns, in a statement to CBS affiliate KENS-TV.

Perhaps the largest "shock factor" in this video is the fact that the anatomy class was dealing with cat intestines, rather than an animal people more typically associate with high school dissections, like frogs or rats. Despite the surprise of many people tracking the story on social media, dissecting cats in schools is actually a fairly normal practice — and this is far from the first time it has raised controversy online. A high school in Orange County, California also sparked controversy after pictures of students posing with the cats went viral, and another high school in Oklahoma dealt with a video of students making the cats dance leaking to the internet.

Animal rights activists have long petitioned for the end of animal dissection in educational settings, including cats. The North East Independent School District says that they have plans to update the lesson plan, but have not shared yet any specifics.

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