A Pennsylvania teacher who is pregnant said she was fired from her Catholic school job because the Harrisburg diocese was upset she wasn’t married.
“I feel like I’m a rewriting of ‘The Scarlet Letter’ at this point, just minus the affair,” Reich, 31, said.
She was told she was fired because she had no immediate plans to marry, the News-Item reported . Reich said she and her longtime boyfriend made the decision to start a family and planned the pregnancy.
Reich informed school administrator Sister Mary Anne Bednar earlier that week. “She said it would be a problem, and she had to contact the diocese,” Reich said.
Bednar did not respond to requests for comment.
According to WNEP, a spokesperson for the diocese said, “The Diocese of Harrisburg is unable to comment on personnel matters. However, as outlined in our policies, every professional employee agrees to follow the teachings, doctrine, and laws of the Catholic Church as part of the hiring process.”
Reich said the diocese’s website lists “immorality” as a cause for dismissal and said it was the reason for her firing. She said she has no ill will toward the school.
“This is their beliefs and their moral code and what they live by and I understand that. Though I don’t agree with it, I understand,” Reich said.
She said she already misses her students “more than I think they can ever understand.”
Many parents agreed that firing Reich was out of line.
“I get their reasoning behind it and why they have to, but I don’t agree with it. I don’t think it was very nice to do,” said Ashley Stroh.
“This teacher is not even Catholic. I don’t care if she would have been, but it’s still wrong for her to lose her job,” said Geri Albertini of Shamokin.
Reich said she plans to appeal her firing but wasn’t sure if she would retain legal counsel.