Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Principal Outs Gay Student Couple

In yet another example of a public school administrator who needs to be fired, 365gay.com is reporting that the principal at Hollis F. Price Middle College High in Memphis, Tennessee outed one or more gay couples in her quest to impose her religious beliefs on all students (contact information is set out below). Previously, the principal had stated that she wanted the names of all student couples, “hetero and homo,” because she wanted to monitor them personally to prevent students from engaging in public displays of affection. These are not deadbeat students. In fact, on it's web site, Hollis F. Price Middle College High states "We believe that every member of our learning community has value and worth and has the right to be respected" (apparently unless you are gay) and describes itself as follows:
Hollis F. Price Middle College High is for students who may be underrepresented in a traditional setting, but have the academic potential and are willing to accept the challenges of a rigorous high school and college curriculum. Students will have full academic schedules consisting of high school and college courses. It is a “school of opportunities” for students who would like to take advantage of a dual enrollment program in a small nurturing academic environment. Financial and other barriers to college are removed.
Here are highlights from 365gay.com's coverage:
(Memphis, Tennessee) A public high school principal who posted the names of two boys on a list of students believed to be couples, revealing their relationship to their parents as well as other students and teachers, violated the students’ constitutional right to freedom of association, the American Civil Liberties Union charged Tuesday.
The two students now represented by the ACLU, Andrew and Nicholas (who have asked that their last names not be revealed), were two A students who had been seeing each other for a short time and were attempting to keep their relationship quiet and private. Although the boys had never been observed by any school staff engaging in any sort of display of affection, the principal called Nicholas’s mother Nichole. According to Nichole, the principal said things like “Did you know your son is gay?” repeatedly and went on to say that she didn’t like gay people and wouldn’t tolerate homosexuality at her school. Both students say they’ve had to deal with verbal harassment from both teachers and students since word got out around the school about their principal’s actions.
“We never bothered anyone or did a single thing at school that broke any of the rules,” said Nicholas, a junior and honor student. “Every day I feel like they’re still punishing me, and I’m worried that this is going to hurt my chances to get into a good college.”*
The principal’s outing of these two students to their families, classmates, and teachers is unacceptable. Its only purpose was to intimidate not only these students but all gay students at Hollis Price,” said Hedy Weinberg, Executive Director at the ACLU of Tennessee. “Educators should be focused on educating their students and not on harassing them because of their sexual orientation or the people with whom they associate.”
For those readers inclined to let the principal what they think of her bigotry, contact information is as follows: Phone: 901.435.1765; Fax: 901.435.1779; e-mail: beasleyd@mcsk12.net
The Interim Superintendant for the Memphis School syaytem can be reached here: Dan Ward 2597 Avery, Room 214, Memphis, TN 38112; Phone: (901) 416-5300; Fax: (901) 416-5578; e-mail: superintendentward@mcsk12.net


Anonymous said...

I thought you favored "outing" hypocrites? Anyone who "conceals" is by definition "hiding," appearing one way, while being another, which is why "outing" exists to expose. But IN THIS CASE, you don't favor "outing." Your reasons are unclear why you have two different standards. Perhaps the "hypocrisy hucksters" should give us non-hucksters their measure of "outing" orthodoxy, how they determine their double standards, and perhaps address how their own special pleading is not itself rank hypocrisy. I for one would appreciate it.

Unknown said...

I have to disagree with anyone (even blogger friends) when it comes to OUTING.

I've never been in favor of it and never will be, even if it's in the case of "hypocrites".

One's private life is just that, PRIVATE, even when it comes to celebs & politicans, much less private folk.

If someone wants to "hide", it's their business, no one else's.

This has always been a hot button for me (along with a couple of others which I won't go into here) when it comes to "our community".

I've always felt that those who preach that people should be OUTED are (and probably spelled wrong) sanctimonious at best and utter (I'll keep it clean) blithering idiots.

I know Michael dosen't want personal attacks on comments, which this is not, this is my long standing feeling on this subject.

If I have offended, I apologize if Gay Species takes it personally.

It is intended for the community at large, and whoever thinks that everyone including God (if He is) should be OUTED.