Lindsey Robertson
December 17, 2014 2:13 pm

Today in good news, a teacher made an awesome decision and a 9-year-old reminded us just how cool kids can be. It all started when an unnamed teacher decided to come out to his elementary school class as gay, and use the announcement as a teachable moment.

He told Pink News that many of the children in had never heard the term “gay” used in a non-derogatory fashion, and many were under the impression that gay people were bad or flawed in some way. He chalked it up to the fact that no one was openly discussing the subject with the kids. “As a primary school teacher I’d always worried about mentioning my sexuality, despite the fact that my colleagues talked about their husbands, wives and significant others all the time,” he told the website.

As part of an anti-bullying initiative, the teacher received support from the headmaster to tell the class that he was gay, so students could understand that when someone used the term in an insulting fashion, they were actually talking about him. “The reaction was fantastic,” says the teacher. “There were a lot of gasps and shocked looks and some basic questions – do you have a boyfriend, etc – but after a couple of minutes they were over it and we moved on to the rest of the lesson.”

A few days later, the teacher received a handwritten note from one of his students.

The note reads:

“Reading it brought tears to my eyes and it took me a little while to compose myself,” he said. “When I thanked her she just shrugged and repeated something one of the boys in the class had said during the lesson, ‘It’s just your life’. Then she went back to her maths.”

The fact that the students were not only accepting of this news, but also understood that it was not necessarily a comfortable or easy thing to reveal to the class, was a wonder to the teacher. This group of young kids listened to what their teacher had to share, accepted it wholeheartedly, and simply shrugged and went about their day. (If only all adults behaved this way.)

The teacher tells Pink News that the note, and what it symbolozes, is something that will stick with him forever

“For my class it was a surprise sure but, to them, it was just something simple and easy to file away as another piece of information. There was no judgement, no follow up, just acceptance . . . Now, I can mention my fiancé as easily as any other teacher and my class know me a little better. I’ve had a lot of letters and cards over the years, but this one I know I’ll keep forever.”

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