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Petitioning Principal Kenneth Jenks and 1 other

Teachers Reprimanded for Advocating Peace in Massachusetts

Recently two teachers from Dennis-Yarmouth Regional High School were reprimanded for speaking their peace. 

There was an assembly for the graduating class of 2010.  At that ceremony a school official honored six seniors who planned on enlisting in the US Armed Services.  During the announcement, two teachers, Adeline Koscher and Marybeth Verani stood in silent protest, and Verani held up an “End War” sign.

The media coverage was extremely biased against the teachers.  When asked about her actions, Verani states, referring to the students in the assembly, “I’m showing them, in a democracy, how to express dissent.”  The reporter from WBZ, a Boston TV station, finishes by saying, “Many believe she needs a lesson in supporting her students.”

The Cape Cod Times reported that many parents and students rallied for the school district to fire the teachers.  In fact a community lynching resulted.  According to The Progressive, very soon after the event, one of the teachers was even referred to as a “c_ _ t” on a Massachusetts police website.

Verani stated to the Cape Cod Times that she and Koscher were trying “to address the expansion of military recruitment of children in our schools…I want them to be home, and alive and well, and going to college, and dating, and having kids, and coaching Little League.”

According to the Cape Cod Times, as a result of their actions, both teachers were put on administrative leave until the end of the school year, and Verani will be suspended without pay for ten days at the start of the upcoming 2010-2011 school year.

Please sign the petition below to protest the unfair actions taken by the Dennis-Yarmouth Regional School District located on Cape Cod, Massachusetts.  Non-violent protests advocating peace and life, rather than war and death, should never be censored in a true democracy.

Letter to
Principal Kenneth Jenks
Assistant Principal Michael Grenier
I am writing the Dennis-Yarmouth Regional School District to protest the unfair treatment that was mitigated out to Adeline Koscher and Marybeth Verani.

Non-violent, silent protests advocating peace instead of war, advocating life instead of death should never be censored in a democracy, and such protests should never be censored within the walls of an American public institution of learning.

By recognizing students who have decided to enlist into the US Armed Forces, the school district is opening the door to a political debate. To censor that debate is to do a disservice to those men and women who stand up and put their lives in harm’s way every day for our freedom of expression and speech.

The actions taken by the Dennis-Yarmouth School District are shameful. By presenting and honoring only one side of the coin, the school district is advocating only violence, war and death. Fortunately for the students and other members of the community, there were at least two courageous teachers who flipped that coin over to celebrate life and peace instead.

Kudos to Adeline Koscher and Marybeth Verani for seizing the moment to teach a real lesson, albeit, perhaps one that many would have rather not witnessed.

Yours sincerely,

Bryan D. Freehling started this petition with a single signature, and now has 360 supporters. Start a petition today to change something you care about.