Beaumont principal ends cosmetology program after gay student enrolls

The Adult Cosmetology class at Beaumont Independent School District’s Taylor Career and Technology Center will have its final class today after its principal met a student he thought was gay.

Instructor Cequada Clark told Southeast Texas’ The Examiner that Principal Thomas Amons voiced his contempt for gays and did not want to see “flamboyantly gay guys” in the BISD program at an event in April.

“I couldn’t believe it then; I kind of thought he was just venting at that time,” Clark said.

But after 22-year-old Kwmane Gray tried to enroll in the program, Amons pulled the plug after meeting him briefly during the first class on Monday.

“As soon as we got a student that (Amons) thought was gay, that was the end. He saw (Gray) come into the class, and then he came to get me out of there,” Clark said.

Clark said she was told to tell Gray he wasn’t welcome, but she refused. She told the paper she only came forward after the decision to end the class despite fear of being fired because she had “to stand up for what’s right.”

BISD’s legal counsel told Amons he couldn’t prevent anyone from enrolling in the program but he did have the power to end the program, which has been around for more than a decade. So, he ended it.

Gray has spent the last three years at Lamar University and wanted to enter the program to save money and earn his cosmetology license before finishing college to become a nurse.

“This is like a hate crime,” Gray told The Examiner. “He never even talked to me. He just judged me. I don’t know and I don’t care (why); I just don’t want him to be over any other kids and maybe do that to them, too. He can cause a lot of trouble for students like that.”

—  Anna Waugh