Catholic schools should not have power to fire staff based on sexuality


Creative Commons image by Victoria Pickering

People all over the world protest and advocate for the LGBTQ community. By protesting they use their voice to push for their rights.

Ava Hoelzel, Photography Editor

Two teachers from Kennedy Catholic High School in Washington “voluntarily” resigned Feb. 13. In truth, the school forced the teachers to resign because of their sexuality. Catholic schools have the right to fire gay staff who are married. Kennedy Catholic High School only asked them to resign after the teachers got engaged. Students and staff have hosted protests and walkouts trying to shed light on this issue.

“In my own experience, I have worked with teachers who may have had a same-sex orientation, and I never felt that had any effect on the quality of their teaching,” Joe Simms former Catholic high school teacher said.

The teacher’s sexuality has nothing to do with their teaching abilities. Knowing this, the teachers should not have been fired. They would teach the same regardless of their sexuality.

“It sounds like they might have an issue with discrimination against homosexuals,” junior Sam Leikam said. 

“In my own experience, I have worked with teachers who may have had a same-sex orientation, and I never felt that had any effect on the quality of their teaching,””

— Joe Simms

A 2006 state law prohibits discrimination in the workplace based on one’s sexuality. The teachers should have been protected by this law. 

“I think it could have some pretty negative impacts on students who go there,” junior Liv Myers said. “Obviously there’s the fear factor, like what if this happens to me; they’re in the same position,” referring to the potential discrimination students face.

After this event, many students may not feel welcome or comfortable going to school. There have been multiple student protests and walkouts at the school because of this issue. Students should have their focus be on learning and their school work. They should not have to worry, or even think about this debate at school.

“Being Catholic myself,” Leikam said. “whether you’re homosexual or heterosexual, it doesn’t matter as long as you’re pursuing the religion. It shouldn’t affect anything.”

Although the Catholic religion does not approve of homosexuality, many Catholics accept homosexuality and do not discriminate against homosexuals. They focus on pursuing their religion and accepting others. 

“It’s like taking away a basic right; it’s unfair. People should just be able to be who they are,” Myers said. 

No one should be discriminated against because of their sexual orientation or sexuality. Every individual has a right to their identity, no matter who they choose to live as or what they identify as. Sexual orientation or sexuality is not necessarily a choice, though it is a part of their identity. Everyone should acknowledge this and recognize others for who they are.