Article Image

IPFS News Link • Courtroom and Trials

JUSTICE: Christian Teacher Fired For Refusing to Use Students' Preferred Pronouns Wins...

•, By Ben Kew

A former high school teacher who was fired for refusing to use students' preferred pronouns has been awarded a $360,000 settlement from the Jurupa Unified School District in California.

The lawsuit, filed in May 2023 by Advocates for Faith and Freedom, was a response to the firing of Jessica Tapia, a gym teacher who refused to follow the district's pronoun policy back in 2022.

Tapia's refusal was based on her Christian beliefs, which she cited as the reason for not accommodating students' gender identities.

The San Francisco Chronicle reports:

The Jurupa Valley Unified School District agreed Tuesday to pay $285,000 to former high school gym teacher Jessica Tapia and $75,000 to her lawyers at Alliance Defending Freedom, a conservative religious nonprofit. The settlement said it was not an admission of wrongdoing by district officials, but Tapia's lawyers proclaimed a victory for religious rights.

Tapia "fought back to ensure her school district was held accountable and that no other teacher has to succumb to this type of discrimination," said attorney Julianne Fleischer.

School district spokesperson Jacqueline Paul said the district decided to settle the case "in the best interest of the students, such that the District would be able to dedicate all of its resources and efforts to its student population regardless of their protected class."

School officials agreed to the settlement despite regulations by the California Department of Education ordering schools to let students decide who, if anyone, should be informed of their gender identity. The state says the rules are authorized by a 2015 law requiring schools to allow transgender students to take part in all programs and to use restrooms and other facilities consistent with their gender identity.

The Gateway Pundit first reported on Tapia's case in February 2023, when she told Fox News in an interview that the pronoun policy had forced her to decide whether to abide by the school's immoral code or stay true to her faith.