Byron “Tanner” Cross, a Virginia teacher who was suspended for comments on transgender students and his own religious faith, has been reinstated after a judge’s ruling.
The Alliance for Defending Freedom, an organization which defended him tweeted “BREAKING: Tanner Cross, a Virginia elementary school teacher and ADF client who was suspended for raising concerns to the board about a proposed gender policy, has won a temporary injunction and the judge has ordered his reinstatement. A massive victory for freedom of speech.”
Per Neal Augustein:
BREAKING: Loudoun County judge rules @LCPSOfficial must reinstate suspended teacher Byron Tanner Cross, who spoke against proposed gender pronoun policy at school board meeting. Judge calls school system’s suspension unconstitutional and its handling of situation “vindictive.”
Judge James Plowman says Cross “was speaking as a citizen, not in his official capacity,” as a teacher. It occurred “during non-working hours and at a forum where public comment was invited.”
School system said it suspended Cross NOT for what he said, but for the disruption it caused. 6 emails from parents were received. Judge Plowman: “There was simply an absence of evidence,” and that “no actual disruption to school operations occurred.”
Judge Plowman: “The Plaintiff’s interest in expressing his First Amendment speech outweighs the Defendants interest in restricting the same,” and that his comments “did not serve to meaningfully disrupt the operation or services of Leesburg Elementary School.”
According to Judge Plowman, @LCPSOfficial “took the added, and seemingly unnecessary step to advise Plaintiff that he was ‘restricted from the buildings and grounds of all LCPS property,’ making it impossible for him to take part in future public comment sessions.
The June 3rd report: