Christian School Defends Expulsion of Teen Who Ate Rainbow Cake

The student does not identify as a member of the LGBTQ community.

A Kentucky high school is defending its decision to expel a student after school officials disapproved of her colorful birthday celebration, local NBC affiliate WAVE 3 News reports.

Whitefield Academy, a private Christian school in Louisville, expelled freshman Kayla Kenney upon discovering that she had celebrated her 15th birthday December 30 at a restaurant while wearing a rainbow sweater and enjoying a rainbow-colored cake.

“She was happy; she looked beautiful,” Kenney’s mother, Kimberly Alford, said. “You know, of course as a mom, I took her picture of her blowing out her candles and I posted that on my Facebook page.”

Alford was contacted a few days later by Whitefield’s Head of School, Dr. Bruce Jacobson. “It was an email expelling Kayla from Whitefield immediately due to a post on social media,” Alford said. “I feel judged, she feels judged, just very devastating for us.”

Jacobson explained that the post “demonstrates a posture of morality and cultural acceptance contrary to that of Whitefield Academy’s beliefs.” The school leader also said the photo is the latest in Kenney’s “lifestyle violations.” According to her mother, Kenney previously got in trouble for vaping.

Whitefield’s code of conduct, which opposes “homosexual orientation,” states that if a student’s off-campus behavior does not align with the school’s biblical beliefs, that student may be disciplined.

But Alford argues that her daughter does not even identify as a member of the LGBTQ community.

“She loves to laugh and dance and that’s just her,” Alford said. “There was nothing intended by that and even when I went back and got the receipt from the bakery, it didn’t say anything about representation, it just said assorted colors.”

“We were celebrating her 15th birthday,” she added. “Not supporting any sexuality or anything like that.”

After Alford filed an appeal, Whitefield agreed to record Kenney’s expulsion as a voluntary withdrawal so that it would not appear on her permanent record.

“You know we teach our kids what would Jesus do,” Alford said. “What would he do here?”

Whitefield responded to requests for further comment with the following statement: “Inaccurate media reports are circling stating that the student in question was expelled from our school solely for a social media post. In fact, she has unfortunately violated our student code of conduct numerous times over the past two years. In the fall, we met with the student to give her a final chance to begin to adhere to our code of conduct. Unfortunately, she did not live up to the agreement, and therefore, has been expelled.”

“I just hope that this does not change people’s opinion of who god is,” Alford concluded. “I don’t want my daughter to be under such scrutiny or judgement.”

Kenney is now attending a local public school.

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