As Josh Billings once said, “Honesty is the rarest wealth anyone can possess.” If you really think of this, it would seem that children are the wealthiest in this regard. Furthermore, they tend to overlook everything else and glance right into the core of what it means to be human and therefore stand up to injustice. That’s exactly what happened in Kennedy Catholic High in Burien, Seattle, where the students walked out protesting the resignation of two teachers who allegedly were forced to do so after getting engaged to their same-sex partners.
Students of Kennedy Catholic High walked out in protest against the forced resignation of two gay teachers
It might seem like a coincidence that both English teacher Paul Danforth and soccer coach Michelle Beattie quit their jobs in Kennedy Catholic High after they got engaged to their same-sex partners. And even though the school insists that these teachers quit voluntarily, Danforth’s fiance Sean Nyberg said Danforth was forced out soon after he got engaged at Disneyland on November 1.
Paul Danforth and Michelle Beattie both quit their jobs soon after getting engaged to their same-sex partners
Hearing this, their pupils just couldn’t stay quiet and flooded the hallways of their school in protest. They then later took the protest outside to the school’s front lawn where they were joined by their parents, many of whom described both teachers who were forced to resign as “highly capable”.
The students organized a mass walk-out after hearing the news
Turns out, the school actually requires teachers to sign a contract that the school can revoke if “the teacher’s lifestyle is incompatible with Catholic moral values or if his/her conduct is at variance with Catholic teaching. While some of the parents were certainly aware of this clause, they never thought the school would actually ever act on it and saw it as injustice.
Students went into the hallways and staged a sit-in, refusing to go back into their classrooms
Erika Dubois, a mother of one of the students who helped to plan the walkout said she had never expected the school to actually act upon the clause mentioned. “Would it have been applied if a teacher were divorced and remarried? Or had children out of wedlock?” She also added that she’s “sad about the message this sends to LGBTQ students: “We love and accept you but we can’t employ you.”
They then moved the protest to the front lawn where the parents joined in as well
Paul Danforth’s fiance, Sean Nyberg, was also convinced that the students were extremely brave to take action and said it was “braver than anything I’ve seen any adults do. The drive and the willingness to maybe get in trouble is pretty inspiring. And that the rest of the world is watching.”