A Utah substitute teacher was fired this month after allegedly criticizing a fifth grade boy who told the class he was thankful for his two adoptive dads.
The incident occurred last Friday at the Deerfield Elementary School in Cedar Hills after the sub asked students about the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday. When the 11-year-old child remarked about his two fathers, she allegedly described two men living together as a sin.
The teacher continued on an anti-homosexuality tirade for 10 minutes and told the boy “that’s nothing to be thankful for,” Salt Lake Tribune reported.
The issue was raised with the school principal by three students who took objection to the offensive comments and the teacher was escorted from the building. The educator, who has not been identified, was reportedly hired via an agency known as Kelly Services.
The situation was first highlighted on social media last week by Louis Van Amstel, who is adopting the child alongside his partner Joshua Van Amstel.
“The substitute teacher was giving her very clear opinion, two men is wrong, homosexuality is wrong, and so you can imagine that set us off, and we are not letting this go,” Louis Van Amstel said in a post with thousands of views. “I am so proud of [the boy’s] school, not only did they let go of the teacher they said this woman is never going to teach in the school ever again.”
In a caption under the short video, he added: “Three girls asked her multiple times to stop. When she didn’t they went to the principal’s office to complain.
“I’m proud of those three girls and [the boy’s] school for standing up for our family against this bully. I’m truly disgusted that the bully in this situation is a teacher in a public school.”
A spokesperson for Kelly Services told Fox 13 in a statement this week: “We are concerned about any reports of inappropriate behavior and take these matters very seriously.
“We conduct business based on the highest standards of integrity, quality, and professional excellence. We’re looking into this situation and we have no further comment at this time.”
A spokesperson for the school district told the Salt Lake Tribune that “appropriate action has been taken.” An investigation into the substitute teacher’s comments remains ongoing.
Back in April, Joshua van Amstel wrote about the adoption proceedings on his own Facebook page. “Adoption has been a discussion for several years through our relationship and today we finally got to meet our son for ourselves. It could not have been more magical,” he said.
Louis Van Amstel is a professional choreographer who has appeared on U.S. reality television shows including Dancing with the Stars and So You Think You Can Dance, IMDb notes.
The couple’s adoption of the boy is scheduled to be finalized on December 19, Fox 13 reported.