Students and parents rally against Georgia Catholic school’s firing of gay band director

By David Ferguson
Friday, May 23, 2014 12:26 EDT
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Flint Dollar via Facebook
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A Catholic prep school in Macon, GA fired its band director this week because he plans to marry his male partner. Macon’s WMAZ Channel 13 reported that Flint Dollar was fired on Wednesday by Mount de Sales Academy president David Held, who freely admitted that Dollar’s plan to marry was the reason for his termination.

Students and parents rallied to defend Dollar and urged the school to rehire him. According to a Facebook page set up in Dollar’s honor, a planned meeting between Held and parents supporting Dollar had to be moved to a larger venue on Friday morning to accommodate all of the attendees.

“Since so many people have been told about meeting at the band room we will start on Appleton Ave at 10 a.m. and then walk to the front of the school and go to the small park right across the street,” said a post. “Please wear blue and gold and bring signs. Band members are also welcome to bring their instruments and we will try to play.”

Academy president David Held defended his position in an email to parents in which he declined to mention Dollar by name or his firing.

“Personnel decisions are never easy, and we consider many factors when making such decisions,” wrote Held. “Teaching ability, knowledge of the subject matter, the ability to communicate with constituents, and the willingness to support the teachings of the Catholic Church are just some of factors considered when making these decisions. Please know that these decisions are never made arbitrarily and are guided always by our mission as a Catholic School.”

Channel 13 noted that the school’s personnel policy said that Mount de Sales Academy is “committed to the principles of equal employment opportunities to all qualified individuals without regard to race, color, gender, ancestry, national origin, age, religion, creed, disability, veteran’s status, sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression, or any other characteristic or status that is protected by federal, state, or local law.”

Watch video about this story, embedded below:

[image of Flint Dollar via Facebook.com]

David Ferguson
David Ferguson
David Ferguson is an editor at Raw Story. He was previously writer and radio producer in Athens, Georgia, hosting two shows for Georgia Public Broadcasting and blogging at Firedoglake.com and elsewhere. He is currently working on a book.
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