It sounds like something to draw immediate outrage: a student was expelled from his Colorado school for having gay parents. So why is the school within its bounds to make this drastic decision?
Because it’s a Catholic school, a private institution where they’ve decided parents sending their kids to the school must live within the faith. And in case you hadn’t noticed, the Catholic church considers homosexuality a sin.
The decision to expel the pre-schooler from Sacred Heart, a school in Boulder, has – not surprisingly – drawn significant criticism. It makes you want to shake the administrators and remind them gay people are people too.
But despite all the valid arguments against the church’s decision, the validation of the decision issued by the Archdiocese of Denver makes sense:
To preserve the mission of our schools, and to respect the faith of wider Catholic community, we expect all families who enroll students to live in accord with Catholic teaching. Our admission policy states clearly, “No person shall be admitted as a student in any Catholic school unless that person and his/her parent(s) subscribe to the school’s philosophy and agree to abide by the educational policies and regulations of the school and Archdiocese.”
When signing our kids up for a school, doesn’t it stand that we’d look for a school where we subscribe to the philosophy? Especially for parents seeking out private school, where they can actually pick and choose the learning environment. Like self-directed learning? Then you go Montessori. Like a rigorous discipline? Then you go with military school or maybe a religious-based education.
The point being while the church’s inherent teachings are wrong, the actions of this one pre-school is to be expected. And the question I’ve posed more than once to gay parents who opt for a religious school – only to encounter trouble – is why are you choosing that school?
There are some religious based private schools that have turned the other cheek and ignore parental proclivities – whether it be homosexuality or Protestantism. With churches losing parishioners at a rapid rate, they’ve had to accept “outsiders” to keep the schools open. Sending your kids to one of those schools is understandable, but even then carries a risk.
Do you want your school teaching your child that life in your household is wrong? Whether it’s teaching them that two moms is sinful or that your family is bad for not regarding Sunday as the Sabbath, the school is a place you’re sending your kids to learn and a place you’re telling them to trust. How then do you expect them not to be confused?
Until we change the Catholic Church’s views on homosexuality (something some parishioners in Boulder have been emboldened to call for in the wake of this decision), homosexual parents can’t expect their kids will be safe in a Catholic school.
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