If one defines excellence by trophies, banners and individual accolades, Valor Christian High School is almost unrivaled in the state of Colorado.
The private religious school located in Highlands Ranch has won over three dozen CHSAA state titles since it opened 14 years ago.
Among her many accomplished alumni: NFL All-Pro Christian McCaffrey, international women’s soccer star Janine Beckie (recent Olympic gold medalist with Canada) and PGA Tour pro Wyndham Clark.
And yet, this week, Valor has been well below the the excellence it claims to represent after volleyball coach Inoke Tonga revealed on social networks that he was forced to resign from his post because he is openly gay.
Christian Value – F
How do we know that’s probably what happened?
Valor Christian’s administrators almost confirmed this by a) not explicitly denying the allegation, and b) providing statements suggesting that it was simply the school acting in accordance with its core set of values.
School officials confirmed to The Post’s Elizabeth Hernandez on Monday morning that they saw a Facebook post from Inoke revealing “that he may not support Valor’s beliefs about sexuality and marriage.”
And since Valor Christian staff, faculty and volunteer leaders are required to accept and uphold these beliefs in their daily lives in order to be part of the school community, it stands to reason that this is why Tonga has been urged to resign.
Or, as Valor’s administrators told The Post: After meeting Inoke, the coach told them he did not support Valor’s beliefs and resigned from his post.
We’ll put it another way: When put in the impossible situation of being asked to deny who he is (a gay man), Inoke refused and walked away from a position he expressed to love. .
As a private religious institution, case law indicates that Valor has the right to define what is expected of its community. But it should be noted that there is no mention of sexuality or marriage in the “Cultural documentPublished on the Valor Christian website – a 24-page statement that defines the ethics of the school.
We talk a lot about “leadership”, “character” and “integrity”.
Which leaves Grading the Week staff wondering: where were those values this week? (Or when the school would have done the same with former women’s lacrosse coach Lauren Benner, a cheerful woman, two years earlier.)
The only leadership we could find was from the student body members who demonstrated on Tuesday.
“My obligation as someone called to love others as the Lord does is to speak out against bigotry and stand up,” Lucy Sarkissian, a 16-year-old Valor student, told Hernandez du Post.
The school’s response: Oddly enough, sending a fleet of leaf blowers to the edge of the campus at the same time these students expressed their support for Tonga across the street.
Because, apparently, leadership involves drowning opposing voices in a cartoonish and ineffective way.
“Valor Christian High School embraces, loves and respects all students, families and other participants in our community, whether or not they agree with Valor’s beliefs,” the Valor Christian statement read this week.
Kiss them so much that they force them to deny their true selves.
Love them so much that they refuse to listen to their concerns.
Respect them so much that they tell them to leave.