My first year at my new high school is about to come to a close at the beginning of June. I've been faced with many new experiences and never in my life did I think I would have to change schools because of one person. Never in my life did I think I would have my school administration tell me to drop the class instead of dealing with the problem. Never in my life did I think I could fear someone that much.
Meet Mr. Matt Mackey of Franklin High School.
I moved in the seventh grade to a suburb just south of Sacramento. The area was nearly triple the population of my old city and was less diverse. The rest of middle school passed in a haze and I soon entered high school. Band was the only class I could have ever cared about and band was where I met the worst teacher I have ever had. He was a recently converted man, fresh to Mormonism and newly wed. He had a myspace and through it he got a few profiles of his students, myself included. He'd joke around with us when we were on telling us to finish our homework or practice our instruments. Then he started to look at our profiles in depth. I had proudly announced my sexuality on myspace in that little box provided. He read it and the next day at school I was called into his office and questioned. Did I really believe I was gay? Have I considered going to a priest and asking for help? Did I want to cause my family shame? He handed me a Church of Latter-Day Saints Bible and I politely declined it I was comfortable enough with who I was to not worry about the opinion of one man. A couple weeks later we had placement testing and although I played better than most, I was sat second to last chair. Each request I petitioned for that year was denied. The name calling soon followed. Carpetmuncher, Dyke Kyke and Gay Rae. I was 15, he was nearly twice my age. My complaints to administration went unnoticed. I began faking illness to avoid my favourite class. When someone finally did notice, I was nearly suspended by SARBs for absences. My VP called me in for a chat and it was there that I explained my situation, his only response to my accusation was to send me to my counselor for a course change form. For two years I battled with administration and eventually the school board. No one listened, not even my Wildcat Unity teacher who fought such cases everyday, no, even she turned her back on me. I begged another lesbian in band to stand up with me against Mackey, she backed down and hid. I was alone.
Junior year was my time to start over. I never hid from my new class mates my sexuality. On my first day of school I wore a Rainbow Recruiter shirt. My new band director looks to me for opinions on how to better our band. I'm hurt that my school let me down. I'm hurt that my board of education let me down, but I'm glad I moved schools. My future doesn't look so bleak anymore.