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Family hoping to leave Oklahoma after transgender student receives threats

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ACHILLE, Okla. – An Oklahoma family says they are planning to move after receiving violent threats on Facebook.

Brandy Rose says she gave birth to a boy, but the child began articulating that she felt like a girl when she was extremely young.

“I thought she was a very, very feminine boy who might grow up to be gay, and we actually got her into a therapist that specializes in gender things with children, and they’re the ones that informed me, ‘Hey, your kid is transgender,’ and explained to me what that meant,” Rose told NBC News.

She says the therapist told her that the best treatment would be to let her child be who she was.

Earlier in life, Rose says her daughter experienced quite a bit of bullying and was even assaulted, which forced them to move.

In March of 2017, the family moved to Achille for a fresh start.  However, that fresh start seems to have been ruined.

Last week, schools in Achille were forced to close their doors amid controversial and threatening comments about the transgender middle school student.

Rose says her daughter has always used the staff bathroom, but she didn’t know where it was on the first day of school.

“She hadn’t been told where the staff bathroom was. Before she was able to be told, she had to pee, so she used the girls bathroom one single time,” she said.

A parent found out and posted to a private Facebook group.

The comments quickly got out of hand, with a person commenting, “If he wants to be a female, make him a female. A good sharp knife will do the job really quick.”

Achille superintendent Rick Beene said they were asked to close schools for part of the week, citing the possibility of demonstrations.

“The thought was, for law enforcement, that you can have an opposing group that might be here and that could lead to problems so law enforcement asked me if we could shut down until Wednesday so they didn’t have to worry about those 360 kids in addition to what they were already having to deal with,” Beene said. “The problem is, when you get into a small town, you don’t have to get a permit to demonstrate, therefore the problem with that is you don’t know who’s showing up, you don’t know what time they’re going to show up or anything like that.”

Beene said the group ‘Achille ISD Parent Group’ is not an official page tied to their school. In fact, he said most of the people participating in the conversation are not parents of any students.

“Our kids, our parents, most of our community is very, very good people… very open to all ethnicities, all populations and, really, we’ve got a group of kids that love each other,” he said. “We know of no bullying as far as this one situation is concerned.”

Officials say no arrests have been made, but the child's mother sought a protective order after a man confronted her in person.

Now, the victim's family says they are hoping to leave the Sooner State.

Anne Babb says she heard about the situation, and decided to start a GoFundMe account to help them move closer to family.

“I was just like, ‘Well, that'd be a blessing to be able to move out of the area,’” Rose recalled telling Babb. “That's when she told me that her and a neighbor of hers had been discussing it. They thought that it would help us to start a GoFundMe page to get the funds to move … I thought that was very sweet and amazing and a blessing, so she set that up for us.”

So far, the account has reached nearly $48,000 and the family says they hope to use the money to move to Houston.

"There's so much more love than there is hate, and everyone needs to know that," she said.

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