Teacher Admits He Is Gay To Student, Is Fired

23-year-old Lewis and Clark graduate teaching student Seth Stambaugh claims he has been discriminated against while on an assignment as a student teacher at an elementary school in the Beaverton, Oregon Student District. This comes after a second complaint from a parent who had initially already complained about the way Stambaugh was dressed. What was he wearing at the time? According to Oregon Live, "pressed pants, an oxford shirt, a tie and a cardigan. Stambaugh has a light Van Dyke and pulls his hair back into a pony tail." Stambaugh is represented by an attorney, Lake Perriguey.

Seth The Portland Mercury details the second complaint by the very same parent:

Later in the week, Stambaugh was leading a journaling activity in the classroom when one of the students asked whether Stambaugh was married. Stambaugh said he was not and, when the student asked why, replied that it would be illegal for him to get married because he "would choose to marry another guy." The student pressed further, asking if that meant Stambaugh liked to hang out with guys and Stambaugh responded, "Yeah." That was the end of the conversation.

After that, says Perriguey, word of the short conversation apparently got back to parent who had previously complained about Stambaugh's appearance. The parent called the school and threatened to remove his child from the classroom.

On September 15th, the principal of Sexton Mountain called the Beaverton School District and told them that Stambaugh was barred from teaching in the district. Stambaugh was told that the comments he had made about his marital status were "inappropriate."

"There's no factual dispute about what happened," says Stambaugh. "The question is whether we tolerate what happened in this state and this culture."

What makes this even more sad is that Stambaugh is of course teaching for the same reason most people do and it's not for the low pay. He said about teaching: "The long hours, the tiring days, they paled in comparison to the sheer energy I got from being in that classroom."

Lewis & Clark says that Stambaugh was dismissed from the school in Beaverton by the school district and though they would have welcomed a conversation about the incident, none was offered.

Thanks to reader Ms. B, here's the contact information for the school:

Sexton Mountain Elementary School – (503) 672-3560

15645 SW Sexton Mountain Dr. Beaverton, OR 97007

Don Martin, Principal: donald_martin@beavton.k12.or.us

Jerome Colonna, Superintendent: Jerome_Colonna@beaverton.k12.or.us


  1. CKNJ says

    The person that made the decision to fire Stambaugh should instead be fired. Put an end to the homophobia for once and for all. If that kid and his bigoted parents can’t deal with him being gay that is their problem. Whether they like it or not, there are capable gay teachers out there, and just because they say they don’t like it, does not make it an offense. The offense is the hate in their dark hearts!

  2. Matthew says

    Looks like the children in this case are more mature than the parents. What the hell are the parents so afraid of? Do they think that this will turn their child gay? It’s not like the teacher made a pass at the child, or anything nasty happened. It was a simple short conversation about one of the prejudices gay people face in this country.

    After so many suicides that have been reported in the past few weeks, you would think that there wouldn’t be so many prejudices and bigotry about this and that parents would be more willing to talk to their children, but I guess this will never change. I just don’t understand this society sometimes.

  3. Jerry says

    Seth Stambaugh may have cause for a lawsuit. The idea that someone could be fired over such an innocuous statement, based on the complaint of one parent, seems ludicrous. And the bar to future employment of any kind within the district, is truly mind-numbing. I always made it a point to deflect such questions, as I didn’t want my personal life to become an issue in my class. Also, not every question a student asks requires an answer when it comes to personal privacy.

  4. phineas says

    The conversation should have stopped with are you married? A simple no is sufficient, and the teacher needs to take control of the situation if he or she is serious about teaching elementary students.

  5. Jeff says

    Guys, it’s time for us to floor both the school and the school district with phone calls expressing our outrage.

  6. TANK says

    “The conversation should have stopped with are you married? A simple no is sufficient, and the teacher needs to take control of the situation if he or she is serious about teaching elementary students.”

    It is precisely this attitude that so many gay people share in conjunction with the weakness that many gays express in failing to put an abrupt stop to this kind of passivity and internalized homophobia…that is a large reason why we’re still where we are. Weakness is sickness.

  7. says

    He shouldn’t have engaged the student in this conversation. He shouldn’t have been let go for his answer. The parent is a conservative bully that runs their life by emotional outbursts and has no self control (who complains about the way teachers are dressed…)

  8. says

    mr stambough is a young teacher who just spoke the truth without inflection …
    his future looks bright from my perspective.
    the child with that parent, however, their future is looking a little blurred.

  9. Jerry6 says

    Let’s see the situation:
    1. The child asked the teacher if he was married. What made the child ask such a question? It had nothing to do with the subject the teacher was teaching. Obviously, something or someone put him up to it.

    2. The teacher answered the question honestly. Was he supposed to lie and say he was married?

    3. Then the child asked him why he was nor married.

    At this point, the whole thing is made clear: The child was put up to it by the child’s parents, and the Principle had to have been part of it because telling the truth as to why he was not married cleared the way for the trap to be sprung.

    The whole situation is so transparent that it would be laughable if it was not so blatantly bigoted.

  10. Amanda says

    Most schools require teachers to keep quiet about their personal lives, particularly marriage. But that in no way is grounds to fire someone over. It’s ludicrous. Oh and the whole clothing issue is just ridiculous.

  11. bobbyjoe says

    Dear god in heaven. Teachers wearing oxford shirts, ties, and cardigans! With loose morals like that, what’s next? Installing stripper polls in kindergarten?! Fire and brimstone raining from heaven?!! Dogs and cats sleeping together?!!!

    Lord, to be a fly on the wall the day this hateful harpy of a parent’s kid tells ’em he’s gay. ’cause karma-wise, you all KNOW it’s gonna happen.

  12. ty says

    i would go for 6 mil in damages from the parents who are responsible for this fiasco by recruited their kid to ask inappropriate personal questions.

  13. bobbyjoe says

    BTW, if the question had been to a straight teacher (let’s call her Miss Betty), it would have likely gone like this:

    Kid: Miss Betty, are you married?

    Miss Betty: Why no, but I AM engaged! I’m engaged to the most wonderful man on earth! Here’s my engagement ring… (waves her hand in front of the class) isn’t it pretty?


    Miss Betty: After we get married, we’re taking our honeymoon in Hawaii! Won’t that be fun? I’ll bring back pictures of our wedding day to show everyone in class!

    …If the conversation had gone like that, the same parent who complained about the gay teacher would probably have baked Miss Betty a great big congratulatory bundt cake.

    Saying the gay teacher should have just ignored or deflected the “are you married” conversation is passively accepting the role of second-class citizen foisted on us by the worst of the homophobes.

  14. says

    Sue, Sue, SUE! Sue their damn butts off. Sorry, we’re just not going to put up with this shit any longer. Nail their sorry asses for a couple of million dollars. Let the school district go straight to hell in a hand-basket. Next time the Principal can remove the student and his parents can put him in private school.

    We are simply not going to put up with this shit any longer.

  15. JT says

    Jerry6, you obviously don’t spend much time around kids. They want to get to know their teachers and will ask those questions. I wouldn’t read any conspiracy into it. The difference is that straight teachers can discuss their spouses and children, and are even encouraged to bring their spouses and children to school events. How is it right that gays must shut up about it? If a kid asks and we are told that we can only decline to talk about it, then that immediately outs us. It’s a de facto DADT ideology in the classroom. As a teacher in South Carolina, I have a cover story that I use when I’m asked. I hate lying to the kids, but I need this job.

  16. Andy F says

    A true teacher isn’t afraid to do the right thing, and answer a student’s question. Questions about a teacher’s personal life shouldn’t always be the center of a lesson, but establishing a bond between teacher and pupil is essential, and as previous posters have mentioned, heterosexual teachers share this kind of information with their students all the time. As a substitute teacher, I’ve gotten all kinds of questions hurled at me, and I have learned how to answer without lying and still keep the students on task. If there is a policy in a district which prohibits any and all such discussions, teachers are effectively having their hands tied.

  17. sparks says

    This is just another way society tries to force gays into denying their orientation, in essence making them ACT like they’re ashamed, which perpetuates the notion that being gay is shameful. It’s a vicious circle.

    The true shame of this, is that if more gay teachers were allowed (even encouraged) to be honest and open, gay kids would have more visible role models and more chances to see that while there may be greater social pressures to conform during their teen years they can go on to lead normal, healthy, happy lives.

    Parents need to become aware that an open and honest gay teacher poses MUCH LESS risk of engaging in unethical interactions with students than a teacher who feels that his or her sexuality is something shameful that must be kept hidden and secret at any cost..

  18. Lucky says

    The child asked the teacher if he was married. What made the child ask such a question? It had nothing to do with the subject the teacher was teaching. Obviously, something or someone put him up to it.

    Are you serious? Kids ask such questions all the time because they’re *curious*.

  19. Jubal Harshaw says


    RE: “Saying the gay teacher should have just ignored or deflected the “are you married” conversation is passively accepting the role of second-class citizen foisted on us by the worst of the homophobes.”

    Trust me, there was nothing passive about it. Those who’ve suggested ignoring or deflecting are closet cases whether they want to admit it or not and they live in their own victimhood and sickness. In short, they’re pathetic.

  20. Ms. B says

    This story makes me so upset. When I first started teaching I would deflect questions about my relationship status. But once I was legally married in California I became more open and completely honest with my students when they ask if I’m married. Most,if not all of the teachers at my school have pictures of their spouses or significant others on their desks and I am proud to have a picture of my wife on my desk.
    I will definitely write a letter to the principal and superintendent about the hypocrisy and bias their school portrays.

    Good Luck Mr. Stambaugh

  21. shannon says

    I bet if he said he murdered someone THAT would have been ok! but to be gay????? AND LOVE SOMEONE ?????NO……………..

  22. A Lewis and Clark Student says

    I am a Lewis and Clark student, and I want to shed light on a few things:

    1st) the student that asked was not the child of the parents that complained.

    2nd) Lewis and Clark College has not adequately dealt with the situation, despite being such a ‘progressive’ liberal arts school in one of the most tolerant cities in the United States(Beaverton is NOT Portland, Oregon).

    3rd) Seth was first told by Lewis and Clark that he was fired. Then he was told he was not. And then Beaverton told him that in fact he was fired. Lewis and Clark, which sets up the program through the graduate school of education, has not done enough to assist him.

    4th) START CALLING THE SCHOOL DISTRICT/CITY COMPLAINING! Overload their phones, email inboxes, etc.

    5th) I am not completely sure about this, but this was an UNPAID job. The extremely cash desperate school districts actually fired a free worker with a great record. Without enough teacher sand enough money, they really could not afford to do this but yet…

  23. says

    So – what happened to Seth’s First Amendment Rights ? Andrew Shivell is targeting and harassing (i.e stalking) a young college student and the Attorney general of Michigan refuses to let him go. Yet a teacher who told a student that he was gay gets fired ??? TOTAL BULLSHIT. He needs to sue and put an end to this nonsense once and for all.

  24. Billy says

    First off I would like to say I feel bad for the teacher who got caught up on this scheme in the first place. It is simply a shame that as a society in supposedly the “freeest” country actually is not free for ALL.

    Because I am a gay person that has lived, worked, etc. in America, is ridiculed by others and apparently nothing is really done about it. This is an abomination to my freedom as an American.

    This whole thing has been blown way out of proportion. If telling the truth is wrong what kind of world are we living in? What is this teaching the children of today? The kids of today are way smarter than we were as kids. The parents need to take more responsibility of their children’s actions!!!

    I also think that this is a very good lawsuit against the child’s parents, school district and everyone involved.

    Another issue is he is a marked man by most of this that is NOT his fault. The children also need to be held accountable for their actions as well as the parents.

    My heart goes out to this poor man that has been ridiculed this way.

  25. Btown says

    @ Jubal Harshaw:

    “Those who’ve suggested ignoring or deflecting are closet cases whether they want to admit it or not and they live in their own victimhood and sickness. In short, they’re pathetic.”

    I find your comment incredibly close-minded and fairly ignorant. Not all LGBTQ people have the privilege of being safe in their communities as out people. I myself am out in the workplace, but that is because I know my workplace is not going to fire me for being gay. Some people don’t have that luxury, and they also don’t have the funds to survive losing a job.

    Just because someone is poor or really needs to keep their job, does not make them a “pathetic” “closet-case”. Your privilege is showing.

  26. J. Thebeau says

    Seth Stambaugh has enough intelligence to arm himself with a lawyer. I only hope that his attorney arms himself with enough intelligence. This case has ALL the earmarks of CHANGE. This case is but one in a long line of court rulings for change. That child actually needs him for a teacher.

  27. TANK says

    Fuck you, btown. If you can’t take it all the way down, then you ain’t worth a damn. I tire of people tallying up what they’ve to lose. You only live this once, and that’s it. With that in mind, if you can’t bring it the house down for a good cause, fuck the consequences, then you just ain’t a person…and should be treated as such. And no, I dont’ care how old you are, or what you do, or your position (however unique), it’s all or nothing from the moment the doc pulls from the crotch until you die…alone…because we all do.

  28. midnightcyn says

    I’m of two minds about this. On the one hand, he should not be fired for telling the truth in a non-graphic way. On the other hand, teachers should not discuss their personal lives with students, whether they are gay or straight. I think this is true up through college. It’s unprofessional and it’s simply not the kid’s business. There is an unfortunate movement to eradicate the concept of personal privacy, an it needs to be reversed. Students have no business asking about private matters.

  29. TANK says

    Fuck y’all about the personal lives of teachers. I never encountered a teacher who didn’t talk ad nauseam about their personal life, and make the class privy to that information. Difference is that they were straight. SO fuck y’all, and hard.

  30. B-RAD says


  31. Roman Bolliger, Switzerland says

    There is a cultural war going on in the United States and it seems that the U.S. is inexorably shifting to become an evangelical theocracy. Farewell civilisation.

  32. says

    I am a teacher. In some school districts there are rules covering what a teacher can or should disclose about their personal lives. If the policy clearly states that the teacher should not talk about theri personal life the case is closed. On the other hand if it doesn’t, then the teacher should use discretion based on the circumstances. I would like to tell all the students at the school that I am gay but this might cause more disruption than the potential value it may have to the few students that are gay. There is no secret between me and the administration and my coluges that I am gay. It has not influenced my relationship with any of the staff. The question for me is when is it proper for a teacher to acknowledge the fact that he or she is gay in a supportive enviornment? Do we tell all? Do we make it known only to those young folks who are looking for direction?

  33. Chris says

    @Eliott: If they don’t enforce it against heterosexual teachers, the policy is discriminatory and should be void.

    @B-RAD: Get professional help.

  34. Shawn S says

    Kudos to Seth for telling the truth! I think, hiding and lying about oneself is instilling the wrong message to impressionable children.
    The school district has already sent the wrong message by saying, “it’s NOT ok to be different and we will get you for being so.”
    I guarantee there is at least one child in that class who has already questioned their own sexuality and this school district has traumatized that child.
    Education does not stop in the classroom!
    Shame on the parent for not teaching their child acceptance and tolerance at home.
    Seth, please DEMAND your job back and continue to EDUCATE!

  35. shanesoho says

    If the story is true the way it’s reported here, it’s an absolultely reasonable thing to question whether the parents may have coached their the child.

  36. nic says

    what does the locution, “graduate teaching student” mean? and, how does that relate to a “student teacher” at an elementary school? try again:

    “Seth Stambaugh, a 23-year-old Lewis and Clark graduate student in education, claims discrimination in his dismissal from his practicum as a student-teacher (?) at an elementary school in the Beaverton, Oregon Student District.

    (new paragraph)
    a parent had complained about the way Stambaugh was dressed. according to Oregon Live(.com?), he was wearing, “pressed pants, an oxford shirt, a tie and a cardigan. Stambaugh [also] has a light Van Dyke and pulls his hair back into a pony tail.”

    see how succinctness helps? i find wordiness tiresome. do not make your reader jump through hoops to get to the gist. you lose him/her after the first couple of sentences.

  37. A.G. says

    Thanks to a Lewis & Clark student and Ms. B for the information.

    I would be interested in knowing the age or grade level of the students in this scenario.

    I’m also curious about the b&w photo posted here. It doesn’t seem to fit the text description.

    Seth is courageous, and I wish him the best.

  38. says

    When I was a teacher, every once in a while some kid who thought he was a hot shot would ask me the “Are you married?” question, knowing full well I wasn’t and probably already aware I was gay (kids aren’t stupid). My stock answer? “No, are you interested?”. Shut them up every time.

  39. adamblast says

    This is why so many creative, talented, and wonderful gay folks decide NOT to teach. They don’t want our honesty, as was said above, it’s DADT in the classroom. Fuck that. You want good teachers, how about a little insulation from the bigot parents?

  40. Pitt90 says

    I’ve heard a lot of stupid discrimination stories in my day, but this has to be one of the biggest. I hope this guy takes the school district to the cleaners for being such cowards.

  41. ratbastard says

    ‘The child asked the teacher if he was married. What made the child ask such a question? It had nothing to do with the subject the teacher was teaching. Obviously, something or someone put him up to it.’


    The child is what’s called a smartass.

    I don’t know what kind of contract Mr. Stambaugh had with the school district, but it certainly sounds like bullshit to me. However, most Americans are what’s called Employee at Will, which means they can quit a job at any time for any reason, but it also means an employer can fire you at any time without any particular reason. The only recourse people would have if they think they’ve been fired unfairly is to file some kind of discrimination lawsuit or claim with a state agency (assuming your state operates such agencies) and of course you must be a member of a legally protected class like a racial minority, some ethnic minorities (not all), female, gay (in some states,not all), a disabled person, etc., But it’s very hard to legally prove such cases.

  42. ratbastard says

    I’m not defending the the actions of the school administrators here, but, Mr. Sambaugh should not have been having any discussion about his private life. He’s a young dude who has just had a hard lesson.

    And if I’m reading between the lines correctly, there must be something about Mr. Sambaugh that must come across as stereotypically gay to others, either his mannerisms, speech, etc., Not that this should matter in a perfect world, but something sounds like it’s being left out of the story as it’s been portrayed.

    This story sounds like something is being left out. Reputable employers, government agencies, are usually very careful and meticulous in matters of employment hiring and termination. They are afraid of course of law suits and bad P.R.

  43. CoMo'mo says

    Gaylib: your response may have shut down discussion in your particular time and place, but in the overheated theo-idiotic cauldron that’s bubbling and hissing now, you’d probably have some body on you for ‘recruitment”.

  44. says

    “I’m not defending the the actions of the school administrators here . . . ”

    Actually, yes you are, RATBASTARD. Just like you defend the bullies when gay people get beat up or commit suicide. Doesn’t seem to be much to read between the lines in this story. Some anti-gay parent was looking for a way to get a gay teacher fired, and, disgracefully, succeeded. Nothing he did should have resulted in his termination. Firing someone for honestly answering a child’s question about your marital status is inexcusable. It would never happen to a straight teacher. As for the idea that he might be, gasp, “stereotypically gay”–so what if he were, should someone be fired for being effeminate? Please tell us how that affects someone’s job performance?

    Gay people who consistently doubt discrimination and bullying against other gay people should be fired.

  45. Frank says

    I wanna know where this alternate reality is where teachers don’t discuss their lives with their students. When I was in school I knew who my teachers husbands, wives, and children were and I knew who was married and who wasn’t. How many human interest stories have you read about in the paper where someone received a proposal in front of their class, sometimes even with the help of students in the class? Usually when people say everyone should keep their personal life private, they are really only speaking to gay people.

  46. nic says

    of course, RAT-shit-ass-BASTARD will always put the onus on the victim. so, what else is knew?

  47. mad1026 says

    I’m so glad Beaverton has so many teachers available that they can indiscriminately discharge one. WTF is going on in this country? It’s ok for Senate candidates and unwed fugly mothers – listening Maggie? – to demonize gays and children are recruited by their parents to entrap a student teacher into admitting he might be gay? What the FUCK did we ever do to you? Explain to me how I have offended you! Is it because I just want to be happy…or do you really believe your own misguided press? Gay people will not destroy marriage; straight folk with their adulterous lifestyles are doing just fine at destroying marriage.

  48. mark says

    Looks like this school district is trying to extend “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” to the teaching profession.

    If there is a suit and a settlement it should have an “inclusiveness studies” classroom segment as part of it.

    Maybe a special section on “ponytails for boys”, though from the picture it appears Seth lost his “controversial” look.

  49. miKem says

    So much for the 1st Amendment…. Not for us it seems. Welcome to the Dark Ages of America.

  50. mwwkw says

    The grammar in the headline is poor. The pronoun ‘he’ appears to be modifying student, suggesting that the teacher told the student that the student was gay, rather than that the teacher told the student that the teacher was gay.

  51. mumpdx says

    > I always made it a point to deflect such questions, as I didn’t want my personal life to become an issue in my class.

    Yes. But this was a student teacher. They will make mistakes (whether or not what he said was a mistake or even wrong.)

  52. Hue-Man says

    The premise of the homophobic parent, the fundatollahs, and some of the comments here is that school-children are sexless learning automatons whose only function at school is to learn about reading, writing, and creationism. My 6-year old godson disabused me of that notion when he rhymed off what could best be described as George Carlin’s routine (although he may not have understood all the words in his extensive vocabulary). Human genetics demand that from age 1 month, we learn about our environment; by school-age, intuition about human behavior and relationships is finely tuned and inquisitive. One final word best describes young teen students – hormones!

  53. Evan says

    It appears that this district already has a reputation of intolerance. Check out the 2/9/2004 school board minutes at http://www.beavton.k12.or.us/pdf/dist_school_board/dist_sch_board_SBRegMinutes2904.pdf The following is excerpted: “The following people addressed the Board and expressed their support of the
    Family Diversity Photo Exhibit which will go on display in the District’s
    Administration Center during the last two weeks of February: Bonnie Tinker,
    Amber Hicks, James Maguire, Katie Hughes, Megan Drottar, Esther Griffin,
    Larry Smith and Mary Jo Mead. They felt the exhibit accurately reflects the
    community’s diversity.”
    “The following people addressed the Board and expressed their concerns about
    the display of the Family Diversity Photo Exhibit: Steve McCracken, Laurie
    Thorschmidt, J. Scott Dueker, Debbie Bacos, Kimberly Motto and Sarah Smith.
    They felt the exhibit promoted moral support for homosexuality which they
    feel should be left up to parents to discuss with their children.”

  54. nic says

    why do you imply i’m cowardly? isn’t that what your banal expression, “grow a pair,” suggests? what do you suppose i am afraid of?
    clue me in, oh valiant one.

    the only one who consistently makes moronic comments is you, dear heart.

  55. B-RAD says


  56. says

    @tank :
    I couldn’t agree with you more:
    “Weakness is sickness”….that’s why we are achieving our rights at a glacial pace…..we’ve no fucking guts.

  57. justiceontherocks says

    If what is reported here is all there is to the story, he certainly should not have been fired. But he doesn’t deserve a freedom medal either. Refusal to discuss ones sexual orientation under every possible circumstance does not make one a closet case. Sometimes it isn’t appropriate. this was one of those times.

  58. delecya says

    @B RAD

    we need to grow up? yourthe one making outlandish stereotypes. ‘stalking every male you come in contact with’. dumbass.

    you can’t fire someone for saying they’re gay unless your going to fire people for saying they’re straight.

    no, gay people don’t think we can say anything we want. we’re just not going to settle with the double standard of heterosexuals getting away with saying what the fuck they want

  59. Ballygregor says

    This is an outrage !! When is the USA going to drag itself into the 21st cent. and collectively put a stop to this utterly appalling biggoted homophobia !? If this were to happen in the UK for instance the parent would be hauled before a judge and would receive the justified anger of a large part of the press and general public.

  60. ratbastard says


    A school girl in England was put with a group of non-English speaking students during a class project. She complained she couldn’t communicate with them and requested placement with students who spoke her language. The teacher screamed at her, called her racist and called the cops. Cops ARRESTED her and charged her with some type of ‘racist’ offense. She was held in a jail cell. THAT is the fucking UK in 2010. No one better dare speak their mind or show the SLIGHTEST offense, real or imagined, or you’ll be charged with some type of PC ‘hate’ speech or offense. Pathetic. You Brits can keep it, we don’t need such out of control shit here in the U.S. Thank God FOR THE FIRST AMENDMENT OF THE U.S. CONSTITUTION…the right to FREE speech.

  61. Jerry6 says

    I have read all of the comments for this item, and could not find a single one that addresses the root cause of this, and, virtually ALL anti Gay speech and actions —– THE SUNDAY PULPIT OF THE CHRISTIAN RELIGIONS. Until all the Priests and Ministers that preach Gay hatred every Sunday are taken to task and prosecuted for HATE SPEECH like ordinary people are, it will never stop. (AND with so many of them Gay themselves, it is a double tragedy.

  62. Matthew says

    This is ridiculous, straight teachers don’t get fired of disciplined for talking about/ mentioning their spouses and partners! I have had teachers who got married and told the class as such that would be why they would be gone for a period of time!! They have answered when students noticed them out side of class that yes or no that was/was not their wife/husband. As a society those are the sort of basic things that we want to know about each other to relate! It is ridiculous to say that gay teachers have to shut up about it and evade such simple questions because some knuckle dragging parent might get upset! Fine let the home school their kid if they can’t handle the fact that not every one in the world shares their same a$$backward views.

  63. Verdon Coleman says

    Well, I think that is a little disingenuous that this teacher was fired because he discussed his private life.

    My male partner, 5th grade teacher, has my picture on his desk and his students all know who I am. We make it a point to never have PDAs because of parent’s like the one described below, and because we are adults.

    A parent went to the School’s Administration and complained about their child having an “immoral” teacher, AKA, my partner. The Administration’s response: you are more than welcome to transfer your child out of this school, but I am not removing a 35+ year teacher because of YOUR issues. I am not disrupting another child’s education because of YOUR issues. Shall I prepare the transfer papers? Tell me where you want me to send the file? The parent backed down at that point.

    My point – sometimes you have to face bullies and call them out. That was the LAST time we had that problem.

  64. John says

    I’m confused…this is from the school district’s Diversity Committee webpage:

    The Beaverton School District with the aid and support of the Diversity Committee will:

    * Increase support, recruit and retain the racial and cultural diversity of the District’s staff;
    * Support varied curricula, instructional and assessment practices creating a climate of safety where all members of the school community are expected and encouraged to respect and appreciate all individuals;
    * Promote equity for all students by ensuring that standards reinforce high student achievement and elimination of achievement gaps;
    * Develop organizational practices and policies that encourage and include the participation and perspectives of all community groups; and
    * Enhance the curriculum to include contributions and perspectives of all members of the school community.

  65. Hollywood, CA says

    Hmmmm… I don’t know if it’s your students business what your martial status is. Gay or straight. Along with your sex life, your salary, where you live, how old you are, how much you weigh, and anything else that’s not related to the class at hand.

    It seems like the teacher took it as an opportunity to get political with a student. He shouldn’t be fired, but I think he used bad judgment.

  66. says

    “Hmmmm… I don’t know if it’s your students business what your martial status is.”

    If that were the case, then teachers would not be allowed to wear wedding rings. Women could not refer to themselves as Mrs. Pregnant teachers would have to disguise their pregnancies because a bulging tummy would reveal that they’ve had sex. No teacher would ever be able to mention their children, or the fact they’re going on a honeymoon. Should we have robots teaching children so they won’t, heaven forbid, know their teachers have a real life?

    Ridiculous? You bet. But no more ridiculous than telling a gay teacher he can’t be out at work. Straight teachers out themselves constantly. It’s just not considered outing. Marital status is public. Why hide it? Why hide your sexuality? Being gay isn’t my private life, it’s who I am. What you do in bed is private. I’ve never heard of a straight teacher who’s been reprimanded or fired for revealing their marital status. It would NEVER happen.

    When Seth said it would be illegal for him to marry, in response to a student’s question, he was simply telling the truth. He wasn’t making a political speech. Yet some gay people on this thread would rather question his judgment rather than question the judgment of a school who would fire someone because of a bigoted parent’s complaint. The problem isn’t honest teachers like Seth, the problem is a society that attaches shame to our relationships by making them illegal.

  67. Brix says

    ADMIT??!! Are you serious? Who created this headline, Focus On The Family?

    At no time did the teacher “admit” he was gay. He may have acknowledged being gay, but I doubt he “admitted” it. Since the linked article never used the word “admit”, I am so disappointed that a member of Towleroad’s editorial staff still thinks that gay people “admit” to being gay.

    Do you have any idea the dangerous subliminal message that you’ve created and laced this story with? We have gay and questioning youth taking their own lives. We really need to chose our words (and more importantly – our perspective of our selves) more carefully.

    I find it offensive when the straight press uses the loaded terminology of our detractors. I find it inexcusable when gay press writes (and subliminally thinks) in these terms.

    So sad.

  68. Paul says

    if ENDA were enacted surely that would mean no one could be fired from the army for being gay right ??? Isnt that the act that means you cant be fired from your job for being gay ?