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Woman fired from school for out of wedlock pregnancy

Former coach of the year fired from Christian school for out-of-wedlock pregnancy
By Cameron Smith
Yahoo! Sports

In an incredibly bizarre situation that appears headed for a legal challenge, a Dallas-area volleyball coach and science teacher was fired by the Christian school at which she worked for becoming pregnant before being married.

As first reported by Dallas Fort Worth network WFAA, Rockwall (Texas) Heritage Christian Academy volleyball coach and science teacher Cathy Samford was fired during the fall semester after she became pregnant out of wedlock. Samford had led the volleyball program for three years and had been named the school's coach of the year once during that span.

Still, that couldn't help save her job when she first admitted her pregnancy during the fall semester, with the school terminating her based on a  violation of her contract's morals clause because it was determined her pregnancy meant she was could not serve as "a Christian role model."

"I looked it up and thought, 'They can't do this,'" the 29-year-old Samford told WFAA. "We all have different views and interpretations. It's not necessarily the Christian thing to do to throw somebody aside because of those."

While Samford and her lawyer, Colin Walsh, are working toward filing a discrimination suit against the school, their case may be complicated by the fact that Heritage Christian Academy is a private school, and recent Supreme Court decisions have defended the right of Christian schools to exert more influence on their hirings and firings because they consider teachers to be "ministers in the classroom."

"The Supreme Court, as a matter of fact in the last month, has ruled 9-to-0 that a Christian school does have that right, because this is a ministry, so we have the right to have standards of conduct," Heritage Christian Academy headmaster Dr. Ron Taylor, who acknowledged that the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission had contacted the school, told WFAA. "How's it going to look to a little fourth grade girl that sees she's pregnant and she's not married?"

While the two parties attempted mediation, those efforts failed quickly because the school refused to consider a settlement for the case.

That has left Samford uninsured and in financial distress as she heads towards giving birth, a situation she never considered possible when she was a proud member of Heritage Christian Academy's faculty.
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by on Apr. 11, 2012 at 1:59 PM
Replies (41-50):
GLWerth
by Gina on Apr. 11, 2012 at 4:46 PM
2 moms liked this

Hmmm...bet they would have been unhappy if she'd had an abortion, but for choosing to keep the baby, to make the choice they would prefer to force on her, she is fired.

She signed the contract and they probably had the right to fire her, I just find this ironic.

If she had gone against their "values" by terminating the pregnancy, no one would have known and she'd have her job.

UpSheRises
by Platinum Member on Apr. 11, 2012 at 4:48 PM

It says it only applies to people providing religious instruction. So it would apply to theology teachers but not to math teachers. I wonder if she was providing religious instruction, i guess she must have been if they had cause to fire her.

Quoting JoshRachelsMAMA:

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/12/us/supreme-court-recognizes-religious-exception-to-job-discrimination-laws.html?_r=1

Della posted the actual case.


Quoting UpSheRises:

What article, the one you posted? I did read it and don't see anything about SCOTUS or a ruling they made in the last month.


Quoting JoshRachelsMAMA:

Read the article. The SCOTUS has already held on cases such as these. One such case as recent as last month.


Quoting UpSheRises:


What's the case?



Quoting JoshRachelsMAMA:

The Supreme Court does not agree with you.



Quoting UpSheRises:



You can't fire someone for being pregnant. That is called discrimination. A morality contract with a employer won't hold up as well in court as the federal and state laws that protect her will.



 


 


jllcali
by LoyalAndCute on Apr. 11, 2012 at 4:52 PM
If she signed a contract saying she wouldn't get knocked up without a husband, she's SOL.
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nb34
by Silver Member on Apr. 11, 2012 at 5:01 PM
1 mom liked this

The only problem is a man can go and have children out of wedlock and no one would know, unless they wanted them to, but a woman gets fired as soon as she shows. Anyways, I think she is better off not working for these people.

Dolphins54559
by New Member on Apr. 12, 2012 at 2:00 AM

I can see both sides of this. I mean, you're working at a Christian school where marriage is supposed to come before kids. But at the same time, you're living in a time where doing it any way you want is what is normal now. As a previous reply said though, if she signed a contract that stated that she not become pregnant out of wedlock, then she is honestly just screwed. However, if nothing in anything she signed stated that, then the school is probably going to have to pay.

baby

baby

baby growth

DoubleAG
by New Member on Apr. 12, 2012 at 2:36 AM
I bet this women will go to hell now. Isn't god forgiving and wants you to learn? Why is It that these school kids need to know her business anyway? The ppl that fired her are dumb. But here we go again. Church organizations who dont want abortions and don't want their insurances to pay for birth control. You can't win either way. And why is it again they want kids from single parent homes?! That would totally look bad on their rep. Also if the kids are worried about her life then how much attention are they paying to what's being taught at school anyways? I don't remember going to school and asking my teacher about their personal life and marriage and stuff like that.
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Its.me.Sam.
by Silver Member on Apr. 12, 2012 at 2:40 AM

yep

like i said in the other post - are they firing other people for having sex out of wedlock - or is it just her because she didnt choose to have a secret abortion.
i get it - she signed a piece of paper lol.  but there's a bigger picture there.  this is just so sad and for me shows how unforgiving and judgemental some of the most self-proclaimed non-judgdmental and forgiving people really are haha.   

Quoting GLWerth:

Hmmm...bet they would have been unhappy if she'd had an abortion, but for choosing to keep the baby, to make the choice they would prefer to force on her, she is fired.

She signed the contract and they probably had the right to fire her, I just find this ironic.

If she had gone against their "values" by terminating the pregnancy, no one would have known and she'd have her job.


ajbrownies
by on Apr. 12, 2012 at 2:55 AM

Like it or not when she signed on to work there she probably signed a CONTRACT saying she would live a certain way. If she didn't want to do that she should have gotten a job somewhere else. It's a reigious school and they obviously have a moral code. If you aren't willing to live by what you agreed to - get a different job. 

Arroree
by Ruby Member on Apr. 12, 2012 at 4:35 AM
1 mom liked this

Heritage Christian Academy headmaster Dr. Ron Taylor, who acknowledged that the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission had contacted the school, told WFAA. "How's it going to look to a little fourth grade girl that sees she's pregnant and she's not married?"

I'd say it would look a lot better than how it looks to a little fourth grade girl who sees that you make one mistake and the Church throws you out like so much trash. Now how does THAT effect a small child? Talk about a traumatizing lesson.

Arroree
by Ruby Member on Apr. 12, 2012 at 4:43 AM


Quoting AdellesMom:

I don't think she has a leg to stand on. She signed a moral contract. According to the Bible, fornication and having babies out of wedlock is a sin.

Yes but also according to the bible there is only one unforgiveable sin and all other sin can be repented and forgiven and that only God is allowed to judge and punish for sins.  Funny how the school doesn't seem to be following those Bible rules very well..

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