Group wants apology from district about Cox High School LGBT assembly

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) — The Virginia Beach Human Rights Commission wants the city’s school division to issue an apology for the “abrupt cancelation” of a gay pride assembly at Cox High School.

The school board canceled the event Dec. 4, one day before the in-school assembly was scheduled. Following backlash, the district rescheduled the Gay-Straight Alliance assembly as a public event to be held on Jan. 30.

Virginia Beach City Schools Superintendent Dr. Aaron Spence says the assembly was moved because having it during school hours set the precedent that any student club can host an event during school hours.

Councilwoman Shannon Kane read a letter written by William “Cliff” Rice, Virginia Beach Human Rights Commission chairman, who expressed concern for the resort city’s reputation.

“The story has spread widely, both nationally and globally, causing embarrassment for not only Virginia Beach’s Schools, but also its populace, thus tarnishing our city’s reputation as an inclusive community where all people are welcome and respected.”

In the letter, the commission calls on the school board to issue an apology and also issue a statement of support for the LGBT community.

Read the full letter here.