Texas teacher posts crying video comparing no mask mandate to mass shooting

A Texas teacher is facing blowback for a video she posted online crying about working for a school district that doesn’t have a mask mandate.

“It is like we’re trying to protect our students from a mass shooting we know is coming but cannot do anything about,” said English teacher Jenny Gillis.

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“Except we can do something about it,” she added. “It’s just that not everyone agrees that wearing a mask will stop the onslaught of students and staff who are likely to become sick, and that makes me sick.”

“This year, there is this overshadowing apprehension that’s clouding my normal back-to-school thoughts. And it’s with [*sobs*] it’s with thoughts like if I die, who’s going to take care of my children,” she asks.

“No one can ever claim there’s a shortage of drama teachers,” one Twitter user pointed out.

In July, Texas Governor Greg Abbott issued an executive order prohibiting mask and vaccine mandates, saying that virus protection should be left up to the individual. Ever since then, the order has come under attack from various localities and school districts who want to institute a mask mandate in their areas.

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“We’re tired of fighting parents who feel like mask mandates violate rights,” says Gillis, who is advocating for a mask mandate in her Austin district. “If I give Covid to my students or my own children and they die, how am I going to live with that?”

Twitter users were quick to point out that children have a very low chance of dying of Covid. According to CDC data, drowning, heart disease, the flu, cancer, stroke, and fire are just a few causes of death that take more lives than Covid among children ages 5-14.

Gillis also expressed concern for teachers who are experiencing acute fear that they will die this year of Covid. “In the meetings that I have been to since we’ve been back, I hear teachers planning like regular, but I also hear them having conversations about finding affordable attorneys so that they can make a will,” she said.

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“This is what we’re all feeling right now. I wrote my handwritten will and gathered my life insurance info and 403b info for my husband in case something happens to me. I pray to the Lord that I don’t get sick and give it to my own kids or students. Keep us safe, dear Jesus,” tweeted a Special Education teacher in Texas.

“But if you’re vaccinated and wear a mask what is there to worry about? I don’t understand. Does the shit work or not? Do these people actually look at the death stats by age group or do they just think people are dying in the streets? How are they the people who teach our kids?” one user wondered.

“They should have wills anyway. They are more at risk of dying in a car accident than Covid and I’m sure they all drive or ride in cars,” observed another.

“Is this teacher vaccinated? If so, her fears of death or hospitalization are grossly over-exaggerated,” said another.


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Gillis responded on Twitter, and her answer calls into question the authenticity of her concern. In the video, she cries, wondering who will mother her children if she dies, but her reply on Twitter states that she knows she’s not going to die.

“Thank you for sharing this. & for all of those wondering… yes, my entire family is fully vaccinated.  I know I won’t die… I don’t want anyone I work w/ or teach to die either. These are things I hear being discussed & it’s just all maddening,” Gillis said.

“Defund teachers unions,” said school choice advocate Corey DeAngelis.

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