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Tuesday, June 22, 2021

Loudon County, VA Teacher Tanner Cross Wins Temporary Injunction and Reinstatement

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Sometimes, the good guys finish first.

Our RedState team has stayed on top of the story of elementary school teacher Byron “Tanner” Cross. Cross chose to stand up at a school board meeting, express his concerns regarding the district’s transgender policy, and record his objections to using gender-neutral language in addressing his young students.

“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.”

For his stance, Cross was placed on administrative leave from his physical education job at Leesburg Elementary in Loudon County, and was not given a definitive date on when, or if, he could return.

As my colleague Kira Davis wrote:

It should not be lost on us that school administrations typically take years to fire or suspend teachers accused of sexual abuse. Cross gave a calm, reasoned, and personal appeal and was suspended for simply expressing his religious (and scientific) beliefs. So a teacher can be suspended for religious expression but children are to be revered for “gender expression.”

Got it.

Utter nonsense, and clear discrimination, but this is the state of the Loudon County school district. Parents are still working feverishly to recall this very school board before they do more damage to their children, while targeting the parents and religious leaders who oppose them, as reported here.

Thankfully, Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) chose to come to Cross’ defense in this matter. On May 28, 2021, ADF sent a letter to Loudon County Public Schools Interim Assistant Superintendent Lucia Sebastian, demanding the district rescind the suspension and reinstate Tanner.

Loudon County Public Schools instead chose to dig in its heels, refusing to entertain any thought of reinstating Tanner to his position. So, ADF filed a lawsuit for injunctive and additional relief on June 1. The suit named Sebastian, Interim Superintendent Scott A. Ziegler, and the Loudon County School District, charging them with harm for their unconstitutional actions against Tanner.


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