This Brave Teacher of the Year Award Recipient Wore LGBT Buttons to White House Meeting with Trump

Mandy Manning traveled from Washington State to the White House to receive her National Teacher of the Year award from the president, and she came with a few messages – which the Trump administration blocked.


President Trump delivered a lovely speech during the award ceremony, praising Manning for her work, which he neglected to describe in any detail.

There's a reason for that.

Manning works with refugee and immigrant students, the very people Trump is waging war against.

During the ceremony, she also engaged in several silent but powerful forms of protest. Manning wore LGBT activism and other political pins on her dress.

One read "Trans Rights Now." Another was the LGBT Pride rainbow in the shape of a teacher's apple. There was a pin for the Women's March, another for the Peace Corps, and one for the Teacher of the Year program.

Manning also handed Trump letters from her refugee and immigrant students,  which she says she hopes he'll read.

The Guardian posted a video noting Manning did not clap when Trump entered the room, nor did she shake his hand.

None of this was evident during Wednesday's ceremony, because the White House in an odd move blocked the press from covering her speech at the event.

So she recorded one of her own.

“My goal is to share my student stories,” Manning told CNN. “But to send a message, to not only by immigrants and refugee students but the LGBT community, that they are wanted, they are loved, they are enough and they matter.”

"My aim is to elevate my student's voices and be that vehicle for them," she added.

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