Published on June 14th, 2012 | by Wild Gender0
Help Asher Doyle Get Schooled
ASHEVILLE, N.C. — Asher Doyle, a trampoline-loving 14-year-old from Gainesville, Fl, is raising money through an online campaign to attend Quaker boarding school in North Carolina after feeling unsupported by the school where he currently resides as a result of his transgender identity. Thus far, Asher has raised $4,000 toward his ultimate goal of $13k.
“Being fourteen isn’t easy, not for anyone. Puberty, middle school, and all that crazy stuff. For trans kids like me, it’s even more complicated,” writes Asher on their fund-raising website. “At two, I found this out about myself. This has never been easy at my other schools, but luckily, my mom has been very supportive and has learned a lot about trans issues over the years. I am so grateful for this. If I hadn’t been raised around a bunch of queers, or if my mom was trans-phobic, I honestly don’t know where I would be. I have felt very affirmed and accepted by a lot of adults in my life, and this has helped me so much.”
According to Asher, the school he goes to now isn’t such a good fit.
“I think they try to be good allies to me, but they don’t know much about trans stuff, and I don’t feel safe coming out as trans when most of the teachers and staff are not so prepared to support me,” said Asher. “This makes it much harder for me to make good, trusting friendships with kids at school, so I wind up feeling pretty isolated, and this causes more stress and loneliness and frustration in my life. It’s been a pretty depressing year so far.”
In looking for a way to make a “better future” for himself, Asher found Arthur Morgan, a small boarding school in the Blue Ridge Mountains. After a recent visit, Asher is enthralled. The campus is surrounded by mountains and woods, he and his classmates sang songs every morning, there were cows and chickens and sheep. He said proudly on his site that the other kids were “super mature and fun, the classes were very small, and interesting.”
“It felt really good to me there, surrounded by mountains, forests, and lots of animals. I applied and they accepted me,” Asher writes. “Although the school has never had an out trans student before, they’re very excited about welcoming me to the community. The staff is doing workshops to learn how to be good allies for me, and any other trans kids they get in the future. I really feel like this sort of outdoor education within a small community will bring out the best in me, and help me build a solid foundation for the rest of my life.”
The overall cost of tuition is $25,000. Asher has already received a scholarship of $7,000 from the school, and $5,000 from family.
“Now all that’s left is only thirteen thousand dollars! Not so bad, right?” Asher writes. “Well, yes. I’m dreamin’ big here, but why not?”
Asher goes into more detail about his quest in the video below.