career advice

Lisa Reimer Isn’t Gonna Fight Her Catholic School Dismissal

Lisa Reimer may have been booted from her Catholic school music teaching job because she’s a lesbian mommy, but she’s not about to become to your cause célèbre.

Reimer isn’t filing a human rights complaint with Canadian authorities. And she’s not going to violate the Little Flower Academy’s decision to nix her. Even though administrators there have concocted a ridiculous storyline to explain her ouster.

Celso Boscariol, chairman of the school’s board of directors, said the school has no issue with Reimer’s sexual orientation, just that she breached the contract by communicating her lifestyle to students. “After she and her partner had this child she wanted to make that a part of the school life and we weren’t inclined to agree to that,” he said. “It was made clear to her that ‘Look, this is not on’ and we had a discussion with her that the best thing to do under the circumstances was that she could complete her assignments from home and we would pay her out to the end of the year because we didn’t want to put her in a situation of financial hardship.”

Reimer said she didn’t mention anything about her personal life in class, adding families at the school probably heard about the birth of her son from other people in the music community because she also teaches elsewhere. Boscariol said Reimer was hired to replace a teacher on maternity leave and her contract wouldn’t have been renewed anyway. He said none of the parents complained about Reimer working at the school.

Reimer said Wednesday that school administrators told her they had no problem with her sexual orientation but that parents would not accept it.

“I really didn’t deal with any parent concerns and we’re not really responding to parent concerns,” Boscariol said. “It’s not like a mob of people showed up demanding things be done. We’re just conducting ourselves within the tenets of the Catholic faith.”

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  • PopCultureQueer

    Whenever I hear a story involving some religious group/school/etc. casting out one of its own due to their sexuality all I can think about is the old “judge not lest ye be judged” edict that so many of them supposedly live by. It’s sad that so many of them forget about that and become hypocrites in the name of following their faith.

  • Jaroslaw

    For a Catholic School to not want her to bring her “lifestyle” to work doesn’t sound like a ridiculous story line to me.

    When one accepts employment at a religious school, it seems perfectly reasonable to me that the instructors tow the line. Canada is different than the US, maybe that violates one of their laws, I don’t know.

    Now if she really didn’t convey this info and it was disseminated by other means; that’s a different issue. Nowhere, though, in your article says WHY she isn’t filing a complaint.

  • Mike L.

    I’ve read in other sites that the school gets money from the gov that is why they are not supposed to discriminate, and why this happens to be an issue. Also it’s in their constitution

    And recently they will will be made to teach same-sex education like public schools. OMG

    Can you imagine public schools in the US teaching same-sex ed?!

    Yeah the crazies, I mean bigots, I mean the religious extremists would have a cow.

  • Pip

    Oh, ok. See, this is just procedural bigotry, so its ok!

  • B

    No. 2 · Jaroslaw wrote, “For a Catholic School to not want her to bring her “lifestyle” to work doesn’t sound like a ridiculous story line to me.”

    She didn’t bring her “lifestyle to work” – at least not according to QUEERTY’s article, which claimed, “Reimer said she didn’t mention anything about her personal life in class.”

    If the school loses any government funding as a result, the school has only itself to blame. They can ask the pope to make up the difference. Then we’ll see if he is willing to put his money where his mouth is.

  • Liano

    @PopCultureQueer: She is not Catholic.

    Eh, at least they are paying her…

  • Matt

    @Jaroslaw: Catholic schools in Canada are entirely publicly funded. Ridiculous, I know, but it’s written into the Constitution because at the time of Confederation, Quebec wanted assurances that their Catholic French culture would be preserved and overridden by the Protestant majority. Sorry for the history lecture.

  • Jaroslaw

    #7 Matt – I forgot that. I do go to Windsor quite frequently as it is only about 8 miles from my home (Hamtramck) and I did know that Catholic Schools are publicly funded.

    #5 yes, I know the article seems to say she didn’t bring her lifestyle to work which makes me wonder why she doesn’t want to file a complaint.

    I wasn’t being an apologist for the Catholic Church, it just seems reasonable that you know the rules before you go in, no?

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