New York City is opening a gay high school, reports the New York Post. It’s an expansion of an alternative program for gay (and bisexual and transgender) students who’d otherwise feel unsafe and unwanted. Harvey Milk High School eventually will enroll 170 students, and will specialize in computer technology, arts and cooking.
State Conservative Party Chairman Mike Long blasted the school as “social engineering” that wastes tax dollars.
“Is there a different way to teach homosexuals? Is there gay math? This is wrong. This makes absolutely no sense,” Long said.
. . . What burns Long most is the $3 million spent on renovations.
At Twilight of the Idols, a new education blog, Nick also thinks segregating gay students is a bad idea.
Michael Bloomberg, mayor of NYC, says that “everybody feels that it’s a good idea because some of the kids who are gays and lesbians have been constantly harassed and beaten in other schools and this lets them get an education without having to worry,” apparently ignoring the fact that every school should offer the safe environment he describes.
Gay-bashing shouldn’t be tolerated anywhere, but let’s be realistic. It happens, and it’s going to keep happening, at many high schools. The pressures contribute to a high rate of alcoholism, drug abuse, high-risk behavior and suicide for gay teens. Maybe Harvey Milk High’s renovations are too lavish — make your own interior decorating jokes — but the basic idea is defensible.
Given the post below, I wonder if the staff will be all gay. The new principal used to work at Brooklyn Automotive, but, well, who knows? I’m sure the school won’t discriminate against heterosexuals who want to attend. There won’t be any.
By the way, I filled out a survey yesterday at the San Francisco Jewish Film Festival. I was startled to be given three choices for gender: male, female or transgender. I found it an easy question, but I noticed some filmgoers were taking their time.