An 8-year-old girl was expelled from an Oklahoma Christian school after saying that she had a crush on another female student. Chloe Shelton, a second-grader at Rejoice Christian School in Owasso, told the classmate how she felt, leading to her permanent dismissal from the school. School officials told Chloe’s mother, Delanie Shelton, that romantic relationships aren’t allowed on campus, but there’s no written documentation of this policy whatsoever.
- The way Chloe was treated was horrific. She was pulled from the playground immediately and made to sit in the principal’s office for several hours, missing valuable learning time, before being sent home. When Delanie came to pick Chloe up, she was told not to bother bringing her daughter back the following day, according to CNN.
- The following day, the school expelled Chloe. The superintendent of the school contacted Delanie the following day to tell her that they were “ending their partnership” with the Shelton family, expelling Chloe and her 5-year-old brother, who was also a student at the school. There was no room for discussion and the school stood by its unreasonable stance. “It wasn’t a relationship nor a practice,” Delanie revealed. “Just a crush. To an 8-year-old, that could just mean that she really enjoys playing on the playground with her.”
- Apparently, the Shelton family’s “beliefs” aren’t acceptable to the school. “I was so blindsided. I was angry, hurt, betrayed, sad… so many different emotions. I just couldn’t believe it,” Delanie recalled of her conversation with the superintendent to CNN. “I asked him to have a sit down meeting to discuss it and process it better and he refused, saying that ‘nothing more needed to be discussed.'”
- Superintendent Joel Pepin has refused to give a statement on the decision. Given how ridiculous the school’s decision to discriminate against Chloe and her family actually is, you would think Pepin would be chomping at the bit to defend their position. In reality, not so much. “Due to privacy and other factors, it is the school’s policy to refrain from public comments regarding any particular student or family,” was all he said. How ridiculous. I sense a lawsuit coming!
- Chloe has received hundreds of messages of support. People who’ve heard her story from around the world have been inspired to reach out offering her love, acceptance, and support. “She’s feeling so loved and supported now because of so many amazing people that have reached out to us,” Denali said. “She’s excited for a fresh start at a new school.”