Students at Seattle Area Catholic High School Protest the Forced Resignation of Two LGBT Teachers: WATCH

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Students at Kennedy Catholic High School in Burien, Washington (a suburb of Seattle) have left their classrooms and are staging a sit-in in their hallways to protest the forced resignation of two LGBT teachers. The students say there is strength in numbers.

My Northwest reports, “A sea of rainbow gay pride flags and “love is love” signs filled the front steps of Burien’s John F. Kennedy Catholic High School Tuesday afternoon, as hundreds of students walked out of class to protest the resignation of two gay teachers. They joined hundreds more parents, Kennedy alumni, and Catholic community members in front of the school, gathering to show their support for teachers Paul Danforth and Michelle Beattie.”

The Seattle Times reports, “They [the students] protested the abrupt departure of two teachers at Kennedy Catholic, who they say were forced to quit last week because of their same-sex relationships. A letter sent to parents from the school’s administration said the “highly capable” teachers “voluntarily resigned,” but did not mention why. So far, no one with firsthand knowledge of the situation has confirmed either account.

It continues, “The exact details of the teachers’ quick exit from the school are still hazy. The teachers did not respond to requests for interviews. On Tuesday, their attorney, Shannon McMinimee, said neither she nor the teachers were in a position to comment. When asked why, she declined to comment further. Teachers who work at schools affiliated with the Archdiocese are required to sign a contract that the school can revoke “if the teacher’s life-style is incompatible with Catholic moral values or if his/her conduct is at variance with Catholic teaching.”

Burien’s Mayor Jimmy Matta posted on Facebook:

Organizers of Burien Pride released the following statement on the Kennedy Catholic High School teacher resignations on Monday, Feb. 17, 2020: “What happened at Kennedy Catholic High School in Burien is an unfortunate but stark reminder that people around the country, including our very own state of Washington, can be fired for who they love. “While Burien Pride cannot speak to the inner workings of the situation and the religious beliefs associated with this matter, we do wish to offer support to the teachers, families, staff, students, and faculty affected by the forced resignation of LGBTQ+ Kennedy Catholic High School teachers Paul Danforth and Michelle Beattie. Until all of us in the LGBTQ+ community are treated fairly and equally, none of us are – and this is a sad reminder of the work that still needs to be done to ensure everyone has the right to live their lives fully – and bring their entire selves to work each and every day.”

 

 

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