© LCPS/Vimeo
Leesburg Elementary School physical education teacher Byron "Tanner" Cross addresses the Loudoun County School Board during the public comment portion of Tuesday's meeting.
A Virginia physical education teacher was placed on administrative leave after he disputed his district's transgender policies, the Loudoun (County) Times-Mirror reported Friday.

Byron "Tanner" Cross, a Leesburg Elementary School teacher in Virginia's Loudoun County Public Schools, is on leave after he voiced his opposition to a proposed district rule that would require faculty acknowledge and address students by their preferred gender-identity pronouns "without any substantiating evidence" at a public meeting Tuesday night.

"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," Cross told the board. "I love all of my students, but I will never lie to them regardless of the consequences. I am 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. It's lying to a child, it's abuse to a child, and it's sinning against our God."

The principal at the school where Cross is employed notified parents of the teacher's leave. "I'm contacting you to let you know that one of our physical education teachers, Tanner Cross, is on leave beginning this morning," LES Principal Shawn Lacy wrote in a Thursday email to parents.

The school board policy Cross objected to would conform to state legislation that calls on the state's school boards to adopt "policies that are consistent with model policies developed by the [Virginia] Department of Education" by the beginning of the 2021-22 school year.

Cross substantiated his claim that children will be harmed by the policy by referencing a May 23 CBS News 60 Minutes segment in which 30 transgender students admitted that they plan to reverse medical procedures because they did not receive enough counseling or questions before making their decision to transition.

The Biden administration recently announced that the Department of Health of Human Services (HHS) will start cracking down against any deviations from pro-transgender health-care policy at the state level in compliance with its new non-biological definition of sex. The notice signaled that HHS will pressure if not coerce Republican-dominated state governments to cover gender transition surgeries in their Medicare programs.

The school board's decision to let go of Cross comes after USA Today revised an op-ed by a female track athlete about the challenges of competing against transgender girls to omit the word "male," which the publication called "hurtful language."
Caroline Downey is a news writer for National Review Online.