A substitute teacher at a Utah County school got a rude awakening after criticizing a fifth grade boy who said he was thankful he had two dads.
On Friday, a substitute teacher at Deerfield Elementary School in Cedar Hills asked students what they were thankful for given the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday..
“I’m thankful that I’m finally going to be adopted by my two dads,” one student replied according to The Salt Lake Tribune.
“Why on earth would you be happy about that?”the teacher reportedly replied before leading into a 10-minute lecture to the class about how “homosexuality is wrong” and “two men living together is a sin.” She told the boy: “That’s nothing to be thankful for.”
Three students raised the issue to the school principal and the teacher was escorted from the building while still arguing. “She also tried to blame our son,” said one of the boy’s dads, Louis van Amstel, “and told him that it was his fault that she went off.”
Van Amstel, who is a professional dancer on Dancing with the Stars, took to Twitter to thank the three students for reporting the incident and to condemn the teacher.
“I’m proud of those three girls and Daniel’s school for standing up for our family against this bully,” he wrote. “I’m truly disgusted that the bully in this situation is a teacher in a public school.”
The van Amstels’ son, who remains unnamed, due to fears that this adoption could be revoked, told his dads that he didn’t speak up because he’s had two failed adoptions and didn’t want the two men to rethink their decision.
“He was so fearful that this could make us think that we don’t want to adopt him,” van Amstel said, holding back tears. “That’s definitely not going to happen. But this situation really hurt him. This person really hurt us.”
The substitute teacher, who has also not been identified and was reportedly hired by an agency known as Kelly Services, has been fired and school officials say that she is “never going to teach” at Deerfield again.
“We are concerned about any reports of inappropriate behavior and take these matters very seriously,” Kelly Services said in a statement. “We conduct business based on the highest standards of integrity, quality, and professional excellence. We’re looking into this situation.”
The couple's adoption of the boy is scheduled to be finalized on December 19, The Salt Lake Tribune reported.