A Former teacher, the Second Lady of the United States, Karen Pence is planning to go back to what she loved. On Tuesday, her office defended her decision to teach arts at a Christian school in Northern Virginia, which bans gay parents and students.
Pence’s office announced that she will be teaching elementary art at Immanuel Christian School in Northern Virginia, for two days a week. Her office highlighted that she will be known as “Mrs. Pence” to her students, and not as the second lady of the United States.
In a statement, Karen Pence said, “I am excited to be back in the classroom and doing what I love to do, which is to teach art to elementary students.”
While her husband, Mike Pence, was serving in Congress, Karen Pence taught art at the same school. Overall, she has spent 25 years as an elementary school teacher.
“I have missed teaching art, and it’s great to return to the school where I taught art for 12 years,” she said.
Soon after the announcement, media reports highlighted that the Immanuel Christian School, where Karen Pence has taken her part-time job, bans gay students and parents. Reports highlighted that the school has a “parent agreement” posted online, which states their policy regarding the same.
The agreement states, “I understand that the school reserves the right, within its sole discretion, to refuse admission to an applicant or to discontinue enrollment of a student if the atmosphere or conduct within a particular home, the activities of a parent or guardian, or the activities of the student are counter to, or are in opposition to, the biblical lifestyle the school teaches.”
“This includes, but is not limited to contumacious behavior, divisive conduct, and participating in, supporting, or condoning sexual immorality, homosexual activity or bi-sexual activity, promoting such practices, or being unable to support the moral principles of the school. (Lev. 20:13 and Romans 1:27.),” it says.
Asking acknowledgement to the importance of biblical principles and family values, it says, “My role as spiritual mentor to my children will be taken seriously.”
Communications director of Karen Pence, Kara Brooks said the attention paid to the school’s agreement is “absurd.”
In a statement, Brook said, “Pence has returned to the school where she previously taught for 12 years. It’s absurd that her decision to teach art to children at a Christian school, and the school’s religious beliefs, are under attack.”
However, Brook reportedly did not comment to a question if Pence agreed with the policy.
According to a letter that Karen Pence wrote in 1991 to an Indiana newspaper, her views were not favorable of the LGBT rights. However, it is unclear whether her outlook has shifted over the years on the issue, or not.