Quote of the day

"We are shut up in schools and college recitation rooms for ten or fifteen years, and come out at last with a bellyful of words and do not know a thing. "

-Ralph Waldo Emerson

Friday, March 7, 2008

Principal Randy Taylor offers complete support to the GSA and the DoS

The School Board meeting went very well last night. Principal Randy Taylor delivered a report to the board relating to the Day of Silence. Taylor embraced the DoS as a positive and important learning experience and vowed to support the GSA in having a safe and well informed event.

We can sleep well tonight.

Great thanks to all of our neighbors, near and far, who cared enough to stand with our LGBT students including, but certainly not limited to;

Tara Borelli of Lambda Legal who came all the way from Los Angeles!
Our GSA friends from Auburn
The American Civil Liberties Union

And many more I am no doubt forgetting.


Anonymous said...

There should be no such thing as a day of silence in schools. The children are there to learn - The teachers are there to educate. Wear a certain colored t-shirt or something to represent but don't refuse to teach or answer questions the children may ask. Why show up to teach and get paid for it if you're not going to do it? Why are you going let them?! That's not what we are paying for...we're paying the teachers to teach our children. Just asking to take a stance some other way. I personally would never send my child to school on that day if they have it in the future. Why send them if they're going to be ignored. I think it's sad and illogical that teachers and administration are allowed to refuse to teach when that's what they are there for. And to comment on the reference to Mark 12:28.... Just take a moment and try to apply the entire Bible not just bits and pieces of it. Look up http://www.godandscience.org/doctrine/sexuality.html
and read it through with the same open "mindedness" you display earlier.

Anonymous said...

I heard that the GSA will be going through some kind of training so that the harassment and altercations of the past 2 years don't occur again this year. As a concerned parent, I'm planning to attend school with my daughter on that day just to see how things go. If the MSHS DoS goes awry again this year, it should just go away.

Dave Eiffert said...

Dear "Anonymous";
If you really want to apply the entire Bible, then you will no doubt support:
Treating your children as in Genesis 19:7-8 and 31-6, and Judges 19:23-6;
Treating those you prevail over as in Numbers 31:18 and Joshua 6:21, and;
Honoring the time tested sentencing guidelines in Numbers 15 and Leviticus 20.
Do you?

Dave Eiffert said...

I want to thank Randy Taylor and the members of the School Board for clearly stating that they intend to have our schools be safe and inclusive for all students, including GLBT.
It was no doubt a difficult statement to make, and one that will produce uncomfortable repercussions, but it was the right thing to do.

Anonymous said...

Thanks to Principal Taylor for understanding how important it is to make all the children feel safe and protect their rights to express themselves in a safe way.

Molly Jester

Kit McCormick said...

The teachers participate in Day of Silence simply by wearing a ribbon. They still teach all day! One year one teacher chose to be silent (two years ago), but the staff decided that wasn't effective or appropriate, so it has not happened again. Let's get the facts right before casting stones!
Kit McCormick, GSA advisor

S.M. said...

DoS *is* a learning experience; it's the very point to why DoS exists. Bible-based bigotry has no place in the schools, and I applaud the principal and the outcome of the meeting last night.

Dan said...

7 March 2008

Mr. Randy Taylor, Principal
Mount Si High School

Dear Mr. Taylor,

I want to extend my sincere thanks to you and the school administration for taking a unified and affirmative position in your support of the GSA and the annual Day of Silence event at last nights school board meeting. Your close involvement with this important event will be essential to its success not only in ensuring a peaceful and safe environment, but also in using the day to share a very important social lesson for all students. To deny the fact that our children will face real bias and discrimination when they leave the doors of Mount Si for the last time is naive. We all have a responsibility to prepare these young adults for the real social challenges they will face in life. The Day of Silence is certainly a positive approach to bringing attention to some of these challenges.

This nation has a tarnished yet progressive history as it relates to human rights. From the struggle to banish slavery in the 1860's, women's suffrage in 1920, the civil rights movement and the feminist movement of the 1960’s to the civil rights struggle our LGBT neighbors face today. All of these changes through our history were inspired by subsequent generations of ever enlightened individuals through open discourse. Our current generation is no different. Most of the young adults I have had the pleasure to meet from Mount Si seem more socially enlightened than many of their elders. This is a good thing. It represents a continued progression towards social justice in which you and every member of the school district play an important role.

I commend your commitment to equality within the school and your strong support of the entire student body, including it's LGBT members.

With kindest regards,

Dan Ferland

Anonymous said...

To the anonymous parent who plans to attend with his/her student...did you miss the part where Principal Taylor, Assistant Principal Castle, and Mr. Goldhammer stood in front of the board and reminded them that there were zero reported incidents last year? I am not sure what harassment and altercations you are referring to are... the only students I remember (I participated last year) being harassed were the students who were remaining silenced--and, we all had to go through training on how to handle it in a mature and respectful manner.

I fully invite you to come and watch us get called faggots, faggot-lovers, homos, etc. by the so-called victimized students you are so quick to believe and defend. Maybe you'll even get to see a few "I love gays...dead" t-shirts. Those were quite popular last year.

And people wonder why we need a day of silence! The day of silence should not go away...closed mindedness, intolerance, and ignorance should.

Anonymous said...

It's safe to say that bullying and harassment against gays and their allies occurs on the DoS, and probably every day of the year, unfortunately. It's also important to be open to the fact that students who are not allies of LGBT or who are neutral are also bullied and harassed on the DoS. It goes both ways, and, listen carefully--NONE of it is acceptable.

I was at the school board meeting as well, and heard many parents gasping when "zero reported incidences" was proclaimed. This simply isn't accurate. To say "nothing happened" is to push the (reverse) harassment under the rug.

I hope that the GSA advisors and school administration are prepared to take seriously ALL reports of bullying, regardless of the whom the offender is or what cause they represent. The administration would be wise to have the "eyes and ears" of as many caring adults as possible in the hallways to watch for harassment.

I hope this years DoS is a peaceful and educational event that brings much needed healing. This can happen with careful, thoughtful planning that recognizes the mistakes of the past and focuses on a positive, peaceful and non-confrontational implementation.

Anonymous said...

Annonymous above said:

"I was at the school board meeting as well, and heard many parents gasping when "zero reported incidences" was proclaimed. This simply isn't accurate. To say "nothing happened" is to push the (reverse) harassment under the rug."

I believe the important question for parents to ask of the administrators is this- What is the process for a student to report an incident of harassment? Not just on DoS, but any day?

The student handbook says there is a zero tolerance, yet doesn't explain how a student facing harassment can report. Just says "tell a teacher, counselor or administrator".

Sounds to me like there needs to be some staff training immediately in this regard.