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Fired Gay Teacher Reaches Agreement with Columbus Catholic Diocese; Will Not Return to Job
COLUMBUS (Ken Hines) -- A teacher who was fired from a central Ohio Catholic school after her homosexuality was made public has agreed with the Columbus Diocese that she will not return to her former job.
The law firm representing former Bishop Watterson High School teacher Carla Hale, along with a spokesperson for the Columbus Catholic Diocese, announced via a joint media release that the sides had agreed to the resolution during mediation.
According to the release, Hale will not be reinstated to her former phys-ed teaching position at Bishop Watterson, but will "receive acknowledgement for her years of service" to the school.
The sides agreed that complete terms of the agreement will be kept from the public.
The agreement brings an end to the popular teacher's fight to return to her position at Bishop Watterson. She was fired in April, 2013 after the public posting of her mother's obituary, which listed Hale's female partner as her spouse.
Bishop Watterson principal Mary Hutson has denied accusations that Hale was fired because of her homosexuality, instead insisting that the teacher's termination resulted from her relationship with her partner.
"Documents support termination. You were not terminated for being gay, but for the spousal relationship publicized in the newspaper which is against church teachings," Hutson wrote in a response to a grievance filed by Hale.
Hale has insisted that she never intentionally hid her sexual orientation from the public, but admitted that she does prefer to keep the details of her personal life private.
Hale's firing, and subsequent quest for reinstatement, made national news and touched off protests in Columbus. The hacktivist group, Anonymous, threatened to expose embarrassing secrets of Diocese members if Hale was not rehired, but no such known actions were taken by the group.