• U.S.

AIDS: Back to School

1 minute read

For the hearing-impaired twelfth-grade students at University High School in Irvine, Calif., last week marked a special homecoming. With hugs, flowers and sign-language messages of “I love you,” they welcomed back Career Counselor Vincent Chalk.

After Chalk, 43, was diagnosed as having AIDS last February, Orange County school officials barred him from his classroom and transferred him to an education department desk job. Citing accepted medical opinion that AIDS cannot be spread by casual contact, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco two weeks ago found that the school had violated federal laws preventing discrimination against the handicapped. Said Chalk of the emotional reunion: “It has given me a lot of optimism. I expect to stay the year and be back next fall. I’m not giving up.”

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