A school in Houston, Texas finds itself in hot water after forcing two students to hide their service dogs from senior pictures. Furthermore, it is uncertain if the dogs will be allowed to walk with the girls at their graduation ceremony.
Groot is a service dog belonging to Erica Ray. She uses Groot for help with epileptic migraines, elevated heart rate, and seizures.
Aries the service dog helps his owner, Leonna Smith, with depression, anxiety, and depression.
When the ladies sat for their senior photos, the dogs just did what they always do: sat by them. Ray was told the dogs will be blurred out of the images.
The school in question, Magnolia West High School, released this statement: “Magnolia ISD is committed to high quality education programs including supports and services that allow all students to maximize their learning achievement. The district is dedicated to meeting the educational needs of all students and at no time were the girls’ educational accommodations violated.”
Ray told ABC13, “It’s frustrating because I know not everyone understands service dogs and what they’re used for, because I know people have abused the right to have a service animal.”
We hope this story turns out in favor of the students who clearly need their service dogs by their sides. The complete news report can be viewed below.