• Petitioned The Chairperson

This petition was delivered to:

Board of Trustees, Pompallier Catholic College, Whangarei, New Zealand
The Chairperson

Reinstate Nigel Studdart to his teaching position.

    1. Shelley  Howard
    2. Petition by

      Shelley Howard

      Lower Hutt, New Zealand

Nigel Studdart was dismissed from his position as teacher at Pompallier College for supporting his students right to protest a position taken by the college principal, Richard Stanton. Mr Stanton's comments, published in a school newsletter, were inappropriate and deemed offensive by teachers, parents and student alike. Students elected to protest their principal's comments and in this Nigel gave his support.  Nigel's actions were responsible and appropriate for an educator. As a teacher and a community leader, he should be expected to encourage individuality of thought and freedom of expression as well as the right of an individual (or group of individuals) to protest, especially when such protest is benign and passive.  But for taking the position he did, Nigel was dismissed by the Pompallier College Board of Trustees, ostensibly for bringing the college into disrepute. 

The bullying attitude of the Principal and the Board of Trustees in response to the students' protest and Nigel's support for them, represents all that we wish to exclude from our society. Religious ideals are a matter for individual reflection. They should stand or fall on their own integrity and values. Religious dogma, especially when that dogma embraces prejudice and bigotry, is not acceptable from any educational institution in our secular society.

Demand the Pompallier Catholic College Board of Trustees reinstate Nigel Studdart immediately, recognise his courage and moral integrity in supporting his students, apologise unconditionally for their actions and reimburse him for lost salary in the period he has been laid off.

The Chairperson, Board of Trustees, Pompallier Catholic College, Whangarei, New Zealand
The supporters of this petition demand your Board reinstate Nigel Studdart to his teaching position immediately and that the Board make an unconditional apology for its action in dismissing him unfairly. Further, we, the supporters of Nigel Studdart, demand he be reimbursed all salary lost during the period he has been unfairly laid off.

[Your name]

Recent signatures


    1. Reached 200 signatures

      Shelley  Howard
      Petition Organizer

      The Pompallier College code of ethics is posted on the college website here: http://www.pompalliercollege.school.nz/news/images/Code%20of%20Ethics%20for%20BOT%20&%20Staff%202012.pdf

      It is significant that the Richard Stanton, college principal, and the Board of Trustees itself in bringing disciplinary proceedings against Nigel Studdart is in fact, in breach of its own commitment to students, parents and community,

      Thank you for your support.

      Shelley Howard

    3. Reached 50 signatures


    Reasons for signing

    • claire evans WHANGAREI, NEW ZEALAND
      • over 1 year ago

      he is a great teacher and was unfairly dismissed

    • Cameron Wilson FAIRFAX, UNITED STATES
      • over 1 year ago

      I go to the school, and although I personally do not like the idea of gay marriage, I do support this.

    • Gerald Griffiths AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND
      • almost 2 years ago

      as a teacher I believe in freedom of speech

    • alysson parker MEDFORD, MA
      • almost 2 years ago

      Bullying in any venue is horrid. When a person in a position of responsibility cannot even uphold such good values as respect for others and treating everyone with dignity - well, who are our children supposed to believe in? And where are the supposed "Christian" values in what is embracing prejudice and bigotry?


    • Jacintha Okan WHANGAREI, NEW ZEALAND
      • almost 2 years ago

      Nigel was definitely in the right and in his position I like to think I would've done the same thing.


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