We received this letter on Friday from Dr. David Hall, along with his permission to repost it. He has been a classroom teacher for 13 years and GSA adviser for 9 years. Dr. Hall’s work has been featured on National Public Radio’s Morning Edition. Additionally, he was the original co-chair of his school’s bullying prevention committee. As an adjunct college professor, he has taught courses on addressing lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender issues in school, bullying prevention, sexuality and law, and other topics.
He is also the author Allies at Work: Creating a Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Inclusive Work Environment. You can meet him on Out & Equal’s Ally Empowerment Tour this year.
Each of you in different ways over the past few months have been a part of my support network, and I wanted to reach out to you on the Day of Silence to let you know how important that has been.
As you are well aware, I advise a high school GSA. Two years ago, a student was outed at home and beaten up and thrown out. We eventually secured shelter for him, somehow got him to focus enough on schoolwork to graduate, and got him into a local university the following summer. Last year, a trans student was beaten up by his uncle and thrown out of his home just months before graduation.
This year that none of that has happened. Today is the Day of Silence, and the American Family Association sent a mean-spirited email to our school administration and school board. One parent chose not to send her child to school today due to the Day of Silence.
During this time, it has been critical that I have had my own support network. And it has meant the world to my students to know where they can find support both within this school and beyond. Each of you have played a significant role during this past year in being a critical part of my support network. It has helped inspire me and understand what we face in a larger context.
In just a few minutes we will be meeting in my room for the last period of the day to break our silence. Please know that each of you — from this high school, to my community, to national organizations — have played such an important role that helps me to empower my students and help them understand how important our work truly is. Thank you for being you.
On this Day of Silence, thank you for always being there to support me and my students.
David M. Hall
David M Hall Associates, LLC