Roncalli LGBT Counselor Controversy: Timeline of events

INDIANAPOLIS -- A guidance counselor at Roncalli High School said she's been asked to either resign from the school or dissolve her same-sex marriage. The counselor, Shelly Fitzgerald, has been on paid administrative leave since before Monday, when she went public with her meeting with school administrators. 

Here's everything that has happened in the controversy:

Monday, Aug. 13

A message posted on Facebook from Fitzgerald said somebody found her marriage certificate from Hancock County and gave it to two school officials. In a meeting with the officials, she says she was given three options:

  • Resign
  • Dissolve her marriage
  • Wait it out through the rest of the year, but the school wouldn't renew her contract.

Fitzgerald said she has no intention of divorcing, quitting or, "not telling anyone why I have to leave the job I've loved so much."

After the story went public, many alumni took Roncalli T-shirts and dropped them off at the school to show support for the counselor. Others asked to be removed from the school's mailing list and vowed to pull donations.

"I personally loved the school and trusted the administration," said Dave Schrader. "But because of the recent events, we have a lot of trouble supporting the school and wearing our shirts with pride."

Roncalli High School posted a statement on its Facebook page, saying the school and the Archdiocese of Indianapolis have been made aware that Fitzgerald, "has made public a confidential personnel matter concerning her employment contract with Roncalli."

MORE | Roncalli guidance counselor says she was asked to resign after school learned of same-sex marriage | Community support grows for Roncalli counselor who says she has to choose between her wife and job

Tuesday, Aug. 14

Fitzgerald gave an interview to RTV6, where she described more about the meeting she had with school administrators. 

"I love my wife very much," Fitzgerald said. "I didn't have any intention to resign a job that I adore. For me to walk out was like saying I didn't want to be there anymore and that wasn't the case."

Other former students also said the entire controversy sheds a light on a culture of intolerance at the school that has been going on for years. They said they formed an after-school group in 2012 that dealt with bullying, mental health and LGBT issues. But the group was shut down after less than a year. 

"They had seen it as encouraging homosexual behavior," said Kendall Wood, class of 2014. 

MORE | Roncalli guidance counselor speaks out after she says she was asked to resign over same-sex marriage | Former students say counselor same-sex marriage controversy sheds light on Roncalli culture

Wednesday, Aug. 15

An Indiana State Representative and Roncalli alumnus announced Wednesday that he will try to block schools that discriminate against employees from receiving taxpayer money.

Roncalli is a private school but they also receive state funding through Indiana's School Choice Voucher program. An annual report from the Indiana Department of Education shows that the school received more than $1.5 million in taxpayer dollars last year. 

"Roncalli should not be rewarded with state dollars if they choose to discriminate against employees simply based on who they love," Rep. Dan Forestal said. 

Daniel Parker resigned from the Roncalli High School board of directors this week, amid the controversy with Fitzgerald. 

Parker voiced his praise for Fitzgerald, who he says was his children's counselor and "one of the greatest assets at Roncalli High School."

MORE | Indiana state representative wants to block public funds from Roncalli | Roncalli board member resigns, voices support for school counselor's same-sex marriage

FULL COVERAGE | Roncalli guidance counselor says she was asked to resign after school learned of same-sex marriage | Community support grows for Roncalli counselor who says she has to choose between her wife and job | Roncalli guidance counselor speaks out after she says she was asked to resign over same-sex marriage | Former students say counselor same-sex marriage controversy sheds light on Roncalli culture Indiana state representative wants to block public funds from Roncalli | Roncalli board member resigns, voices support for school counselor's same-sex marriage

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