American News Jun 12, 2021 10:07 PM EST

Loudon County Public Schools to appeal court decision reinstating gym teacher after comments on gender

Virginia’s Loudon County Public Schools stated Friday that they intend to appeal the court’s decision to reinstate physical education teacher Tanner Cross, who was suspended last month after refusing to acknowledge that a "biological boy can be a girl and vice versa."

Loudon County Public Schools to appeal court decision reinstating gym teacher after comments on gender
Hannah Nightingale Washington DC
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Virginia’s Loudon County Public Schools stated Friday that they intend to appeal the court’s decision to reinstate physical education teacher Tanner Cross, who was suspended last month after refusing to acknowledge that a "biological boy can be a girl and vice versa."

In a statement from LCPS, they state that they would bring the issue to Virginia’s Supreme Court.

"LCPS respectfully disagrees with the Circuit Court’s decision to issue the injunction, and it is appealing this ruling to the Supreme Court of Virginia," said the statement, obtained by Fox News.

"Leesburg Elementary School and Loudoun County Public Schools experienced – and continue to experience – significant disruption since the May 25 School Board meeting during which Cross addressed the board. Many students and parents at Leesburg Elementary have expressed fear, hurt and disappointment about coming to school," it continues.

"Addressing those concerns is paramount to the school division's goal to provide a safe, welcoming, and affirming learning environment for all students. While LCPS respects the rights of public-school employees to free speech and free exercise of religion, those rights do not outweigh the rights of students to be educated in a supportive and nurturing environment."

Judge James Plowman said in his ruling that Cross’ "interest in expressing his First Amendment speech outweigh the Defendant's interest in restricting the same and the level of disruption that Defendant asserts did not serve to meaningfully disrupt the operations or services of Leesburg Elementary School."

Representing Cross is Alliance Defense Freedom, who said it was confident they would succeed in the case.

"Judge Plowman’s opinion ordering Tanner’s reinstatement was a well-reasoned application of these facts to clearly-established law," said Sr. Counsel & Director of the Center for Academic Freedom with Alliance Defending Freedom Tyson Langhofer. "We are confident that, if the Virginia Supreme Court hears the appeal, it will affirm the circuit court’s decision."

Cross was suspended from his teaching position at Leesburg Elementary last month after making controversial comments in a school board meeting regarding gender.

"My name is Tanner Cross and I am speaking out of love for those who are suffering from gender dysphoria," said Cross. "It's not my intention to hurt anyone, but there are certain truths that we must face when ready. We condemn school policies [that] would damage children, defile the holy image of God. I love all of my students but I will never lie to them regardless of the consequences. I'm a teacher but I serve God first and I will not affirm that a biological boy can be a girl and vice versa because it's against my religion."

Cross was subsequently reinstated to his position around a week later.

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