You would think that the principal of a high school would know better than to spew hateful words towards her own students. One principal, Dorothy Bond of Haywood County High School in the state of Tennessee made anti-gay statements during an assembly with her students. Members of the audience noticed she made comments that homosexual students would ‘go to hell’. Bond also warned any pregnant students their ‘life is over’.
As a role model, Bond has a great deal to learn. Since her remarks and the community outrage, Dorothy Bond has since resigned from her position as principal of Haywood County High School.
Adolescents are at a vulnerable time in their lives. At a time when bullying is at an all time high throughout the globe, particularly anti-gay bullying, are Dorothy Bond’s messages to her students really the ones she needs to be sending? With statements such as the ones made at Haywood County high school, it’s no wonder ignorance of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) community continues to grow.
One student recalled:
“She turned around and she directly pointed to the gay people and said, if you’re gay you’re going to hell and if you’re pregnant, you’re life is over,”
One parent, Tony Snipes commented:
“At an assembly, she told the young men that if they are sitting between the legs of a girl getting their hair braided for a few hours, they must be gay,” Snipes said. “That’s not her role. Her role as educator, as principal, is to encourage them regardless of their circumstances or situations.”
Sources: Huff Post Gay Voices, The Wallstreet Journal
Educators and administrators alike need to consider how their actions and words impact the young minds they are working with. As role models, they hold the power over the minds of others, including both gay and straight students. With developing minds and personal identities, teens are at risk for internalizing self-hate and other mixed messages if they receive them from supposed mentors.
What do you think needs to be done to improve the way educators and administrators such as Dorothy Bond from Haywood County High School work with susceptible teens? Do you think it was a good decision on Bond’s part to resign? Have thoughts on this article you’d like to share? Leave a comment below or connect via Twitter, Facebook, or Belky’s Blog!