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Unread 9th June 2010, 02:36 PM
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Married Teacher Fired Over Premarital Sex

"Fourth-grade teacher Jarretta Hamilton was newly married and expecting a baby when she went to speak with her supervisors in April of last year.

But the administrators at Southland Christian School in St. Cloud parried her query about maternity leave with a query of their own: When did she conceive?

After Hamilton admitted that her child had been conceived about three weeks before her February 20, 2009, wedding, the school fired her.

Now she's suing in federal court.

A July 20, 2009, letter signed by school administrator Julie Ennis explains why the school's administrators thought they had to fire Hamilton:

"Jarretta was asked not to return because of a moral issue that was disregarded, namely fornication, sex outside of marriage," the letter reads. "The employment application, which she filled out, clearly states that as a leader before our students we require all teachers to maintain and communicate the values and purpose of our school."

The letter declares that sex outside of marriage is immoral and that other pregnant teachers have been able to remain employed with the school because they conceived within marriage.

source
While she has my sympathies, this is what happens when you work for an intolerant Christian organization: "Jesus forgives so we don't have to. And, it's our way or the highway, so happy job shopping. BTW, don't expect a favorable reference."
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Unread 9th June 2010, 03:00 PM
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Originally Posted by Washington View Post
"Fourth-grade teacher Jarretta Hamilton was newly married and expecting a baby when she went to speak with her supervisors in April of last year.

But the administrators at Southland Christian School in St. Cloud parried her query about maternity leave with a query of their own: When did she conceive?

After Hamilton admitted that her child had been conceived about three weeks before her February 20, 2009, wedding, the school fired her.

Now she's suing in federal court.

A July 20, 2009, letter signed by school administrator Julie Ennis explains why the school's administrators thought they had to fire Hamilton:

"Jarretta was asked not to return because of a moral issue that was disregarded, namely fornication, sex outside of marriage," the letter reads. "The employment application, which she filled out, clearly states that as a leader before our students we require all teachers to maintain and communicate the values and purpose of our school."

The letter declares that sex outside of marriage is immoral and that other pregnant teachers have been able to remain employed with the school because they conceived within marriage.

source
While she has my sympathies, this is what happens when you work for an intolerant Christian organization: "Jesus forgives so we don't have to. And, it's our way or the highway, so happy job shopping. BTW, don't expect a favorable reference."
So holding to your own principles is now "intolerant" eh? Well color me intolerant then. She knew the specifics of the job beforehand and either lied or disregarded them as unimportant. She has no legal foot to stand on. I don't believe that she would necessarily be a bad influence on children just because she got pregnant before she was married; The children she would be teaching would likely never even find out. From a "common sense" approach I certainly don't outright defend the school's disciplinary action but I can't ignore their right to issue discipline as they see it warranted.
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Unread 9th June 2010, 03:08 PM
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She can always get a job at a public school where she would be welcomed I'm sure.
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Unread 9th June 2010, 03:09 PM
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I wonder why she feels the need to sue.. whatever happened to being like Jesus, the whole.. "turn the other cheek" idea? I dunno.. i'm just personally against sueing for the most part.

'"She wants compensation for the loss of the job, and she's seeking compensatory damages for emotional distress," said Edward Gay, Hamilton's attorney who filed the suit in U.S. District Court in Orlando.'
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Unread 9th June 2010, 03:11 PM
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Originally Posted by Washington View Post
[indent]Jesus forgives so we don't have to. And, it's our way or the highway, so happy job shopping. BTW, don't expect a favorable reference."
People should realize that when you work for a religious organization then you agree to play by their rules. They have the right to only want people who believe exactly as they do to work for them. If I'm not mistaken, they made her sign their rules, regulations, and statement of faith. If you don't like it, then teach in a secular school. I'm a Christian and I have differing beliefs from all of the Christian schools in my area. I would never work for them or put any child of mine in their care for indoctrination because I don't condone all of their beliefs and I know they don't condone all of mine. If, by chance, I were a parent who paid good money to put my child in such an institution- then it stands to reason that I agree with their beliefs and would certainly expect all employees to follow them as well.
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Unread 9th June 2010, 03:21 PM
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Originally Posted by Texan40 View Post
So holding to your own principles is now "intolerant" eh? Well color me intolerant then.
Okay.


From a "common sense" approach I certainly don't outright defend the school's disciplinary action but I can't ignore their right to issue discipline as they see it warranted.
And why bother with a "common sense approach" when a strict adherence to the rules is so much easier. It obviates the need for bothersome considerations.



Originally Posted by Mela Monkey
I wonder why she feels the need to sue.. whatever happened to being like Jesus, the whole.. "turn the other cheek" idea? I dunno.. i'm just personally against sueing for the most part.
Only until you find yourself wrongly treated, I would suspect.



Originally Posted by seashale76
If I'm not mistaken, they made her sign their rules, regulations, and statement of faith.
This is something that isn't addressed in the article; however, I suspect that having mention the rule, but not indicating she had seen or signed it--a critical point--that she did not.
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Unread 9th June 2010, 03:23 PM
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I don't agree with the school's action. But I also don't think the woman has much legal standing. It's a private school and it was spelled out clearly what they are expecting of their teachers.

That said.....it seems the school's behavior is a bit incongruous with their religious teachings. Namely to forgive others for sinful transgressions, or to help those who have need of assistance. Certainly, a pregnant woman will be better off with more money in the bank. Turning away someone like that seems unChristian to be. More importantly, she made a mistake and the school decides to not forgive or use this as a teaching point to students.

So instead of learning that people----even teachers----can commit sinful acts and they can find forgiveness as long as they repent, the students will learn that sinful behavior will be punished long after the person has committed them and no amount of 'right' behavior (i.e marrying the father, being a productive member of society, supporting the child) will allow for forgiveness. Geesh, not sure that's the message I want to give to my kid.
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Unread 9th June 2010, 03:29 PM
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The school has standards and an image it must maintain. This is why many organizations, religious and otherwise, have morality clauses in their contracts. This is something generally understood when people agree to work with an employer.

It's a bad time to get fired and I feel for her. However, that's the end of my sympathy. She knew what she was getting into and the lawsuit only shows her to be petty and vindictive.
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Unread 9th June 2010, 03:36 PM
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Christians have an image they must uphold.

That everyone knows that Christians fail to live up to this image is why so many people consider Christians to by holier-than-thou hypocrites.

Jesus, on the other hand, used to hang out with sinners of various stripes.
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Unread 9th June 2010, 03:42 PM
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Jesus told sinners to sin no more. He commanded people to be holy. The fact that we are all growing in holiness does not make us hypocrites. Admittedly, some are but they are precisely why the person was fired. We represent Christ. When God commanded that we do not take His name in vain He was not talking about cussing.
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