Education

Teacher, vice principal resign over gay fable

Teacher Omar Currie reads a copy of a complaint a parent filed after he read the book ‘King & King” to his third grade students at Efland-Cheeks Elementary School. The school has upheld the use of the book, but a parent has appealed the superintendent.
Teacher Omar Currie reads a copy of a complaint a parent filed after he read the book ‘King & King” to his third grade students at Efland-Cheeks Elementary School. The school has upheld the use of the book, but a parent has appealed the superintendent. mschultz@newsobserver.com

The teacher and assistant principal at the center of a controversy around a gay fairy tale read to third graders have resigned.

Omar Currie and Meg Goodhand of Efland-Cheeks Elementary School submitted resignation letters, Orange County Schools spokesman Seth Stephens said Monday.

Currie had said he would resign because he felt administrators did not support him after he read “King & King,” in which two princes fall in love and get married. He has said he read the book after a boy in his class was called gay in a derogatory way and told he was acting like a girl.

A school review committee upheld the use of the book twice. But Principal Kiley Brown told Currie that teachers would have to submit a list of all books they read to parents.

Parent Brandy Davis, one of three people who filed formal complaints about the book, appealed the review committee’s ruling to the superintendent. As part of that appeal, the school district will hold a public meeting at 6 p.m. Thursday at Gravelly Hill Middle School, 4801 W. Ten Road in Efland.

Currie said Monday he will prepare remarks but is not sure if he’ll speak.

“I’m just disappointed,” he said. Administrators criticized him recently for an interview he did on school grounds and told him he might have violated student privacy rules, even though he has not named the student, he said.

Currie said he has had five job interviews, including for positions in the Durham Public Schools, and that all have been positive. “It’s nice to be told by administrators that my actions were correct,” he said.

He said he plans to tutor some students in Efland this summer and provide Big Brother-type mentoring there after that. “I still want to be very involved in the Efland community,” he said.

Goodhand, who gave Currie the book and spoke on his behalf at a school meeting, declined requests for comment.

Schultz: 919-829-8950

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