February 17, 2004
NEA Ex-Gay Educators Caucus Formed
WASHINGTON DC – A group of ex-gay teachers has formed a recognized caucus of the National Education Association (NEA). The new NEA Ex-Gay Educators Caucus is chaired by Jeralee Smith, a former lesbian.
The NEA is the largest teachers’ union in the United States. An NEA caucus is an internal entity recognized by NEA for the purpose of attempting to influence NEA governance. Caucuses do not speak for, or act on behalf of the NEA, but advise and lobby NEA governance.
According to Smith, the Ex-Gay Educators Caucus will work to prevent discrimination and intolerance against ex-gay students, teachers, and their supporters. It will advocate a safe environment for all diverse populations, including ex-gay education employees and questioning youth.
Said Smith, “Our caucus will work with NEA to develop policies that recognize the needs of ex-gays in our education system. We believe education is the best way to overcome society’s phobia of former homosexuals. The caucus will also advocate alternatives to homosexuality in school curriculum to ensure diversity.”
Contact: Jeralee Smith, Chair, NEA Ex-Gay Educators Caucus