Catholic school forces out head for remarrying

July 24, 2009

The Guardian has reported that the popular headteacher of St Patrick’s primary school in Sheffield has had to resign because he is a divorcee but wishes to remarry in the autumn. Michael Cassidy is well liked and respected in the school, and parents have started a petition protesting against his departure.

One parent told the Sheffield Star:

“Mr Cassidy is a fantastic head and both children and parents are really upset. Any school occasion and he’s there, and he knows every child’s name. There are a lot of upset and angry parents. Catholic views on marriage and divorce are very strict, but if it is going to put our children’s learning in jeopardy then I think it needs rethinking.”

It is only because faith schools are given wide exemptions from equalities law that such discrimination is possible. The Equality Bill that is currently before parliament seeks to restate the exemptions that allow schools to dismiss teachers according to what they do in their personal life, as well as their religious beliefs. Accord is campaigning for all of these exemptions to be removed.

The full story of the Catholic headteacher is here:

Alex Kennedy is the Coalition Coordinator
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