Gay student kicked out by parents over prom date

PinkNews Staff Writer March 25, 2010
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A gay student who persuaded his school to allow him to take his boyfriend to prom has been kicked out by his parents.

Derrick Martin, 18, a student at Bleckley County High, in Georgia, US, was initially told he could not attend the April 17th event with a male date but school officials relented after he challenged them.

However, he told the Macon Telegraph that he was now staying with a friend because the media attention around his story had led his parents to tell him to leave home.

Mr Martin said he had been inspired by the case of Constance McMillen, a Mississippi student whose school cancelled prom rather than let her attend with a female date. This week, a court ruled that her rights had been violated.

All students at Bleckley County High must ask permission to bring dates who do not attend the school. Mr Martin successfully argued that the only policy on prom dates was that they must be aged under 21.

The media attention around his story has inspired supporters to offer to pay for tuxedos, dinner and even a limo ride for the couple.

Mr Martin told the newspaper: “I appreciate it. I was speechless that they said they would buy me dinner or buy me a tux in case someone messed mine up.”

He added that he hoped his success would lead to other gay couples going to prom. He said: “Maybe [other gay students] will think if Bleckley County will let them, maybe my school will.”

A school official confirmed this was the first time a gay couple have asked to attend prom together.

More: Americas

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