Valley Stream South High School’s Awesome Kids Demanding A Gay-Straight Alliance

This was the scene at Valley Stream South High School on Long Island, where administrators had blocked students Sam Seligman, Kelly Egan, and Joseph Kofler (pictured below, L-R) from forming a gay-straight alliance, despite some 30 interested members and hundreds of signatures from their peers supporting the move. And while local media reported yesterday Interim Superintendent Dr. Richard Marsh, after meeting with Principal Maureen Henry (who supposedly denied the group at the first because she called kids “faggots” back when she was a student, and hey, no biggie), had approved the GSA, the Long Island Gay and Lesbian Youth group says in a statement “school officials had not informed the student organizers of any such approval and no meeting took place.” Adds LIGALY chief David Kilmnick: “If there was a GSA at Valley Stream South, the more than 200 students at the rally would have been at the club meeting, not standing outside the school demanding that the GSA be approved.” I tend to believe him; it looks cold out there!

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  • Francis

    Interesting how far homophobes are going to more or less outright deny the fact gay people exist and are fully human and deserve to be affirmed, and especially the fact that many straight individuals (and most young straight kids) tend not to have an issue whatsoever, and that’s at the very least. We’re really seeing a major clash of cultures and mentalities, luckily the future of the country tends to be more enlightened, which speaks for a better future ahead.

  • Jon B

    I think this is really impressive. I live 1 town over from Valley Stream. For the most part it is a blue collar neighborhood, and mostly Catholic. The fact that this many kids came out to stand up for LGBT rights is pretty impressive. It is one of the more socially conservative areas in Nassau County. I think it’s a great example of how times are changing. That’s a ton of kids standing around after school with signs, cheering for their gay and lesbian friends.

  • another survivor of vs south

    yes, truly amazing. what jon b says about the dominant socio-economic context of that school rang true when i went there in 1982. that nonqueer students supported their queer brethren in speaking truth to power is a sign of a more liberal presence. hopefully the exposure of this dark-ages principal’s remarks and superintendent’s disingenuousness (“of course we approved of this club! we bought everybody flowers and cake to celebrate the first meeting”) will embarrass them into some self reflection. this is the kind of thing we expect to see in a school in mississippi or tennessee – not new york! hopefully all of those kids are off to good, liberal colleges where they can rock their thing in peace, safety and dignity.

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