The rest is over at 365Gay.com if you care to read it.
(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.
In a letter to school board officials in Memphis, the ACLU demanded that the school reprimand the principal and take steps to ensure such actions never happen again.
In September of 2007, the principal at Hollis F. Price Middle College High told teachers 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.
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.
The principal heard about them through another student, then wrote their names on a list she posted next to her desk, in full view of anyone who entered her office.
One of the boys’ mothers personally witnessed the list when she met with the principal a few days later.
“I couldn’t believe it when I went to meet with the principal and that list was right there by her desk where anyone could see it,” said Andrea, Andrew’s mother.
“African American people face enough obstacles to succeeding in this world and I want my son to have every opportunity he’s worked so hard for. Our schools should be helping our children do well, not tearing them down for something like this.”
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.
According to Nicholas, he also suffered another consequence of the principal’s discrimination. He had submitted extensive paperwork and several recommendations from teachers for a school trip to New Orleans to assist in rebuilding efforts.
Having a long history of community service, he was considered a shoo-in to be selected to go before the incident, but then a teacher told Nicholas some faculty were afraid he might “embarrass the school” or engage in “inappropriate behavior.”
A few days later, another student who hadn’t even applied to go on the trip was selected in his place.
And so it goes.