An openly gay Hudson Valley school superintendent has resigned amid backlash over his sexual identity by a small group of organized mothers.
In Orange County, Florida Union Free School District Superintendent Larry Leaven announced his resignation on Monday, Nov. 14 on the district's website, saying his resignation will take effect Wednesday, Nov. 30.
"It has been a pleasure to practice my craft alongside some of the best in education," Leaven said. "I look forward to hearing great things about the Florida learning community and wish everyone well as they continue to connect, lead, and empower the leaders of tomorrow."
Leaven assumed his post in August 2021 after more than three decades in education as a teacher, principal, adjunct lecturer, and assistant superintendent.
The road to Leaven's resignation began with a group called Moms for Liberty Orange County Chapter.
“Take your pornographic indoctrination back from where you came from,” the group said in relation to Leaven serving as superintendent. “This is what happens when you mess with our children in OCNY.”
Backing Leaven is a group called Defense of Democracy. The group is outraged over the loss of Leaven.
"This small group (Moms for Liberty) has been able to shout down the majority of the community, and the school board members that they had backed during the election let Mr. Leaven go last week," the group said on Facebook.
They plan to appeal the loss of Leaven during a district meeting on Thursday, Nov. 17, and have started a petition online at Change.org.
The group says the Moms for Liberty has attacked Leaven for months online and by posting flyers around town and making statements to all who will listen.
"We are devastated that this excellent administrator is gone, and furious that such an infantile and ludicrous group of people could have so easily created this kind of chaos in our community," the group wrote on Facebook.
The group went on to say Moms for Liberty are demonstrating "what kind of vitriol they are willing to unleash on any educators or administrators who don't fall into their white/straight/Christian dynamic."
Leaven and school officials could not be reached for comment.
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