Christian teacher faces disciplinary action for calling transgender pupil a 'girl'

Joshua Sutcliffe

Joshua Sutcliffe also pastors at an evangelical church in Oxford

The Oxfordshire school told BBC that it would be "inappropriate" to comment on the investigation into the teacher's conduct.

According to Daily Mail, the 27-year-old teacher had praised the pupil and a friend saying, "Well done girls", when he spotted them working hard. He was called into the principal's office November 6 and told there had been a "transgender complaint" lodged against him.

Sutcliffe called the ordeal "political correctness gone mad".

Sutcliffe said he apologized to the student.

Sutcliffe admitted that, as a Christian, he was reticent to use male pronouns such as "he" and "him" and instead opted to use the student's name. He thought he was in accordance with the school's policies, and said he has not encountered any problems with this, the Daily Mail reports.

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The pupil's family had also claimed that Sutcliffe had unfairly given the student a disproportionate number of detentions for poor behavior, but the claim was reportedly not upheld during the investigation.

Mr Sutcliffe said: 'I was absolutely shocked to be told by the head that I was under investigation. I didn't know what was happening. "I had always tried to respect the pupil and keep a professional attitude as well as my integrity, but it seemed to me that the school was trying to force me to adhere to its liberal, Leftist agenda".

The Christian Legal Centre, which is supporting him, said he faced an internal disciplinary hearing on Wednesday. "I have never looked to impose my convictions on others", Sutcliffe, who is also a Christian pastor, said, according to BBC News.

Joshua Sutcliffe, who teaches math at a school in Oxfordshire, has been suspended and could be terminated from his job after the school had found following a week-long investigation that he had "misgendered" the pupil. I felt completely out of my depth and intimidated'.

"While the suggestion that gender is fluid conflicts sharply with my Christian beliefs, I recognize my responsibility as a teacher and Christian to treat each of my pupils with respect", he said.

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Mr Sutcliffe, a pastor at an evangelical church in Oxford, also said that several years ago he had started a voluntary Bible club during lunchtimes at the school which had been well attended.

"This is one of a large number of cases we are encountering where teachers are finding themselves silenced or punished if they refuse to fall in line with the current transgender fad", she said.

He had told the senior staff conducting the investigation that he believes it was not wrong to call a person born a female a girl, but he maintained that he would never do that publicly because he was a professional.

Daily Mail noted that the tutor group had been shut down earlier this year, following complaints about homophobia because he had responded to a student's question about marriage by saying the Bible describes it as a being between a man and a woman. He also said that he did not feel that he should be forced to use the pronouns "he" and "him" as doing so would be a violation of his human rights.

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