Articles tagged with gay rights

Exclusion can be hurtful, especially when perpetrated by administrators

formatura-prom-baile-623646-lStories about bullying in schools have taken over headlines these past few weeks.  From cases of students bullying students—as was the case with Phoebe Prince and Alexis Pilkington—or even school administrators bullying teachers, there has been a lot of discussion about what a hostile environment school can be.

But what happens when the taunting and mistreatment move past the level of peer-to-peer? This was the situation that faced Constance McMillen when her Jackson, Miss. High school told her she could not bring a date of the same sex to her senior prom. 

The incident jumped into the national spotlight when “the ACLU sent a demand letter to Superintendent Teresa McNeece in February, saying the rules against same-sex prom dates and girls wearing tuxedos violated McMillen’s constitutional rights. The district responded by withdrawing its sponsorship and canceling the April 2 event,” theWashington Post reported. They later scheduled a private event with school chaperones, which McMillen was free to attend with whomever she chose.

What they didn’t tell her is they also rescheduled the regular prom, and she wasn’t invited. As if cancelling the prom to avoid the sight of two girls dancing together wasn’t outrageous enough, the school and a group of parents conspired to add insult to injury by scheduling an alternative event that McMillen was never formally told about.

Naomi Dillon|April 13th, 2010|Categories: Governance, School Climate, American School Board Journal|Tags: , |

Save us from “lifestyles!” A modest proposal for Va.’s AG

08-ktc-floor-speech-portraitDon’t you just hate the redheaded lifestyle?  All those pigtails and freckles — that attitude that says “We’re one in 50 and so, so special.” Makes me want to gag.

Ditto for diabetics and their nasty little needles. Don’t they notice kids could be watching?

Finally, and then I’ll stop: Old People. Excuse me, Senior Citizens. Please, somebody: take them off our streets and let them drive their silly golf carts at their retirement homes — far away from the rest of us. 

Fortunately, I’m not alone in my disgust of alternative lifestyles. I have an ally in Ken Cuccinelli, the attorney general of Virginia. This month, as you may know, Cuccinelli sent letters to every Virginia public university saying they could no longer include sexual orientation in their anti-discrimination policies because, in his view, the authority to add protected groups rests solely with the state legislature. And luckily, our ever-vigilant Virginia General Assembly has defeated attempts to include gay people in state nondiscrimination policies 25 times since 1997 — a record we can all be proud of.

Now there’s some question over whether the attorney general really has this kind of power over the universities, which have long been allowed — too long, some of us say — to go their own way regarding their antidiscrimination policies. In fact, as one letter-writer to The Washington Post pointed out last week, the University of Virginia, Virginia Tech, and some other state universities have also include veterans as a protected class!

Naomi Dillon|March 11th, 2010|Categories: Governance, Policy Formation, American School Board Journal|Tags: , , , , |
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