Public apology to be issued to Tacoma school teacher fired in ’72 for being gay

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Tacoma’s Stadium High School, where the president of the Tacoma School Board will publicly apologize to former Wilson High teacher James Gaylord for his firing in 1972 for being gay. (Photo:

TACOMA — The president of the Tacoma School Board will issue a public apology to a high school teacher who was fired in 1972 for being gay, it was announced Wednesday.

James Gaylord was a teacher at Wilson High School until he was ousted in 1972 by the Tacoma School District’s board of directors for being gay. He appealed his firing to the courts. But the Washington state Supreme Court upheld the board’s decision and the U.S. Supreme Court refused to hear Gaylord’s appeal.

The Tacoma School Board announced Wednesday that its president, Kurt Miller, will offer a public apology and appreciation to Gaylord on Sunday at the Oasis Youth Center’s Proud Outloud fundraiser, at the Stadium High School Performing Arts Center, 111 N. E St., at 6:45 p.m.

Oasis is Tacoma’s drop-in, support and resource center for LGBTQ youth.



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