Supporters Rally Around Fired Teacher
Updated: Thursday, April 25 2013, 06:29 AM EDT
COLUMBUS – Supporters are rallying around Carla Hale, the former Bishop Watterson High School teacher fired after the school learned she is gay.
Hale met with the school’s principal Tuesday night. She announced Wednesday that she is not getting her job back.
“There was a pit in my stomach when they announced it,” said alumnus Ryan Reik.
The school says it didn’t fire Hale for being gay, but rather that her same-sex relationship with her partner was against church teachings.
A group of recent alumni have started a petition that’s now received more than 56,000 online signatures trying to get Hale her job back.
“I’m concerned about the future of the school,” said alumnus Will Klatt. “I want to make it very clear that this kind of intolerance is not something that represents our community and we’re not going to let it stand.”
The group, which calls itself “Halestorm”, held a meeting this past weekend. Hundreds of parents and alumni showed up to support Hale. Halestorm leaders say they’re planning more meetings to pressure the Diocese of Columbus to give Hale her job back.
“We will not be silenced,” said alumna Amanda Finelli. “We want to force them to revise their employment policies before this happens to someone else.”
Reporter: Ben Garbarek