Christian Teacher Punished for ‘Misgendering’ Student

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by Anita Carey  •  ChurchMilitant.com  •  November 20, 2017   

Accidental slip of the tongue used as an excuse to penalize outspoken Christian

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OXFORD, England (ChurchMilitant.com) - A Christian math teacher has been suspended and his job is in jeopardy for daring to believe we are made male and female.

Joshua Sutcliffe has been working at a school in Oxfordshire since 2015, where he is well-liked and his students are excelling academically. Sutcliffe, who is also an associate pastor at Christ Revelation Church, is open about his Christian beliefs and feels he is balancing his convictions by calling his students by their chosen name and avoiding gender-specific pronouns.  

Sutcliffe told Church Militant, "The Stonewall community appears to intentionally to go out looking to cause trouble with people who are earnestly living out the Faith in Christ. I have seen paper slips that encourage members [to] write down and trip up anyone not conforming to their ideology."

In response to the school's actions against him, he said, "I have been shocked and saddened by the actions of the school, which, in my opinion, reflect an increasing trend of seeing Christians, people like me, being marginalized in the public square and our beliefs punished and silenced."


In the incident that sparked his suspension, Sutcliffe said, "Well done, girls," to a small working group of female students that included the gender-confused student. Sutcliffe only wanted to acknowledge their hard work and the improvement in grades of that student because initially "the student was getting the poorest scores in the class and went on to get the best score in the class in the most recent test," he said. 

He quickly apologized to the student, but the pupil's mother issued a complaint claiming her child was "misgendered" several times and received unfair detentions.  The school's investigation did not confirm these allegations, and Sutcliffe told Church Militant, "No other parent has made a complaint about me," adding, "This is the second time that this parent made a complaint about me. The first time was for handing out Christian leaflets at the gay pride march."


I have a deep conviction that we are all made in God's image, male and female.
 

Sutcliffe told Church Militant, "I have always acted professionally, and my professing of faith in Christ in the public square meant that the community knew where I stood. I was shining the light of Christ for all to see. This is something that the school community initially didn't understand but learned to accept, to some extent, that was part of who I am." Sutcliffe added, "There are many Christian families in our community, who have been very supportive during this time." 

Stonewall schools operate under a strict homophobic anti-bullying policy and publish an Education Equality Index to showcase "its commitment to tackling homophobia, biphobia and transphobia in their local schools." The 2016 report admitted, "In-line with Stonewall's own move to become trans-inclusive in 2015, I am also delighted that this year's index is fully trans-inclusive for the first time."

Sutcliffe told Church Militant that "anyone that doesn't conform to their way of thinking will be segregated for not adhering to 'equality'." He explained, "The issue with that is that not all ideas are equal. Jumping off a bridge doesn't have equal weight to opening the door for someone. Ideas and policies are up for rigorous debate. Every person is equal. Ideas are not equal."


Sutcliffe explained other times when his Christian faith led to discrimination. "I have been unable to continue to run a very successful Bible club, which the children loved," he said, also noting, "Over a hundred members came." Sutcliffe ran the Bible club for 18 months until the headteacher shut down the club for failure to provide a register and curriculum. Even after he produced the documents, the club was still canceled. The LGBT club, the mindfulness club and a Qigong club were all left alone, even without the register and curriculum. 

"Also, I have given around 400 Bibles to the students in the school," he explained. He told Church Militant he organized a school assembly when he was first hired where he gave 200 Bibles to the students. "I wasn't allowed to do an assembly ever again," he noted.

Students really enjoyed seeing a biblical perspective of [sic] life and it really improves the working relationships with every student," he said, adding, "My classes outperformed every parallel class."

Sutcliffe's pastoral work at Christ Revelation Church involves street evangelization, where he and other members of the church "take to the streets of Oxford ... to testify, to preach, to teach, to pray for others and to celebrate our risen God." He says their dream is to set up a Bible School in Oxford, as well as an orphanage. They are currently raising money to support these goals. 

If we collude in the transgender delusion, we do not serve our children well, we harm them.

"I have a deep conviction that we are all made in God's image, male and female," Sutcliffe said. "I have never looked to impose my convictions on others, I just try to earnestly live out the Gospel of peace." 

Sutcliffe told Church Militant he is being "supported by the Christian Legal Centre, the legal arm of Christian Concern, who provide all of their services for free."  Andrea Williams, the chief executive of the Christian Legal Centre, said, "If we collude in the transgender delusion, we do not serve our children well, we harm them."

A number of professionals agree with Williams. Doctor Michelle Cretella, president of the American College of Pediatricians, said she was "horrified" when she learned of children being subjected to "experimentation." She has been actively fighting against transition protocols that she calls "child abuse" and "[c]hemical castration and the surgical mutilation of children."

Cretella told Church Militant in July, "We must urge the silent majority of parents, grandparents and health professionals to speak out. We must urge our leaders to question the authority of the so-called experts and to demand an end to this massive dangerous social experiment that is already having devastating effects upon our young people."

Walt Heyer, a former transgendered woman who runs SexChangeRegret.com, told Church Militant that sex change surgeries often fail, not because of medical complications but because the person still has "comorbid disorders that surgery did not treat." He explained that sex change surgeries are "only cosmetic," saying that "it is biologically impossible to change a man into a woman or a woman into a man." 

After a week-long investigation, the school found that Sutcliffe "misgendered" the student, "demonstrating discriminatory behaviors" and "[contravened] the school's equality policy." It was recommended that he face the penalties for misconduct under the school's disciplinary policy.

Sutcliffe told Church Militant, "I consider it pure joy when I face trials of many kinds because I know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance."

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