Mr. Tanner Cross is fighting back against his school of employment after he was suspended for refusing to affirm children’s “transgender” identity.
Cross, who is a teacher at Leesburg Elementary School, cited his Christian belief to the Loudoun County school board as a reason for doing so but was placed on administrative leave regardless.
And now, the time has come for him to push back.
Cross is being supported by Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF), an organization with a mission to protect religious freedoms, free speech, parental rights, and the sanctity of life.
"I am taking a stand for my freedom, and I want to thank you for standing with me.
From the bottom of my heart, thank you for your support" – ADF client Tanner Crosshttps://t.co/i4vELxtpqm
— Alliance Defending Freedom (@AllianceDefends) June 5, 2021
Mr. Cross is being represented by ADF Senior Counsel Tyson Langhofer and last week they sued the school district.
“Public schools have no business compelling teachers to express ideological beliefs that they don’t hold, nor do they have the right to suspend someone simply for respectfully providing their opinion at a public meeting,” Mr. Langhofer said. “The school district favors a certain set of beliefs on a hotly contested issue, and it wants to force Tanner to cry uncle and endorse them as well. That’s neither legal nor constitutional, and neither was the school’s move to place Tanner on leave.”
Cross was accused of disrupting the school setting with his speech, and Stacey Haney, a lawyer for the school, said that he was not put on administrative leave for his belief but for disruption, according to a report.
A Leesburg church community prays for P.E. teacher Tanner Cross who was placed on administrative leave after speaking out against a transgender school policy. A judge will decide by Monday if Cross can return to work as a lawsuit against the district moves forward. @7NewsDC pic.twitter.com/UpE5QRvulB
— Carl Willis (@CarlWillisTV) June 5, 2021
After ADF sent a letter to the district asking for Cross to be allowed to return to work, the school responded
“by doubling down on its unconstitutional actions and stating that it intends to stand by its decision to suspend Cross,” ADF told the media. “In response, ADF attorneys filed suit against the school district Tuesday and asked the court to immediately halt the enforcement of Cross’s suspension.”
As governor, I will stand up for teachers like Tanner Cross. I am calling on the Loudoun County School Board to reinstate Tanner Cross fully because they have absolutely ignored his constitutional rights.
If we don’t stand up for our teachers and parents, who will? pic.twitter.com/mI5qGzfzBH
— Glenn Youngkin (@GlennYoungkin) June 1, 2021
According to ADF, the actions taken against the teacher violate the Virginia Constitution as well as his free exercise of religion protected by the First Amendment.
“Loudoun County Public Schools officials suspended an elementary school teacher for voicing his objections to two proposed school policies during the public comment period of a school board meeting,” ADF stressed. “The policies would force teachers to violate their beliefs by requiring them to address students with their chosen pronouns rather than the ones consistent with their biological sex.”
To see part of the speech that led to Mr. Cross’s suspension, please click below.
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