FULLERTON, Calif. — A school administrator has apologized to a senior at Fullerton Union High School for publicly disqualifying him from the “Mr. Fullerton” competition, an annual school event, after the student voiced his support for same-sex marriage.
Immediately following, “assistant principal Joe Abell came on stage in front of the hundreds of people in attendance and interrupted [the student’s] speech and disqualified him from the competition,” according to witnesses, who have contacted the school district to complain about Abell’s actions.
In a statement, Fullerton Joint Union High School District Superintendent George Giokaris said the student’s answer did not violate any school rules.
“The district has concluded that the matter was not handled appropriately by the assistant principal,” Giokaris said. “The district believes that the matter should have been handled privately with the student by the assistant principal.”
Giokaris said the administrator apologized privately to the student and publicly over the school’s public-address system Wednesday morning.
Organizers of a student protest are asking the school district to “change to the rules stated in the student handbook so that it directly includes rules against bullying based on sexual orientation, perceived sexual orientation, and gender identity.”
School officials declined to comment if there would be any addition disciplinary action against the administrator.