SWAMPSCOTT, Mass. — An elementary school principal in Massachusetts has announced in a letter that he identifies as a woman and will present himself as female going forward.
Principal Tom Daniels, who has led Stanley Elementary School since 2012, explained in the Feb. 6 correspondence that he has struggled with his gender identity from the time he was a youth, and has “never felt completely happy or at peace” with himself. He said that he has hid his struggle from the world for years.
“After confronting a series of challenges last fall, I let myself imagine the possibility of being completely honest with myself and those around me. I can now say it: I am transgender,” Daniels wrote. “For me, that means I identify as both a male and female, and I plan to move toward presenting myself and identifying as female.”
He advised that he will now go by his middle name, Shannon, instead of Tom, which he said “perfectly denot[es] [his] fluid gender identity.”
“I would respectfully ask that I be called Principal Daniels. When using pronouns to refer to me, ‘he,’ ‘she’ and ‘they’ are all acceptable,” Daniels stated.
The principal noted that he would most likely present himself differently, and said that he would work to ensure that his decision would cause “no negative impact” on the school. He also gave parents suggestions as to what to say to their children in regard to why his looks have changed, such as, “There are many different ways boys and girls express themselves. It is important that we accept everyone as they are.”
“I am proud to be the leader of this school, and I sincerely believe that the ability to live my life openly and authentically gives me great serenity and will make a me a more sensitive, empathetic, and effective leader,” Daniels wrote. “I humbly ask that you support me as you would any family member going through a profound life change.”
He further told The Salem News that he woke up one morning and asked himself, “Who am I and what do I want?”
“I said, internally I’m a female and I want to be one,'” Daniels claimed. “It gave me this incredible peace and happiness. It was just right. At age 52, I’m brave enough and maybe foolhardy enough to do the right thing.”
Superintendent Pamela Angelakis applauded Daniels and said she admired his transparency.
However, commenters under The Salem News’ story expressed dismay over the situation.
“What is wrong with this picture besides everything? Satan is the author of confusion. And this is in our schools? How insane,” one commenter wrote.
“This is so wrong to be in our school systems. Totally unacceptable to force this on children!” another stated.
“Public school is no place for a child,” a third opined.
As previously reported, Scripture states that those who turn God’s creation “upside down” are like the clay telling the potter that he doesn’t know what he’s doing.
Romans 9:20 says, “Nay but, O man, who art thou that repliest against God? Shall the thing formed say to Him that formed it, ‘Why hast thou made me thus?’”
Isaiah 29:16 also declares, “Surely your turning of things upside down shall be esteemed as the potter’s clay, for shall the work say of Him that made it, ‘He made me not?’ Or shall the thing framed say of Him that framed it, ‘He had no understanding?’”
Deuteronomy 22:5 further outlines, “The woman shall not wear that which pertaineth unto a man, neither shall a man put on a woman’s garment, for all that do so are abomination unto the Lord thy God.”