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Florida Christian school announces new gender policy

A Christian school in Florida has mentioned it’ll solely consult with college students by their intercourse assigned at beginning, whereas homosexual and transgender college students shall be requested to go away.

Parents at Grace Christian School in Valrico, about 20 miles exterior of Tampa, realized of the policy in a June 6 electronic mail from administrator Barry McKeen titled “Important School Policy Point of Emphasis. Please Read,” NBC News reported.

In the e-mail, McKeen emphasised that college students could be referred to by “the gender on their birth certificate.”

“We believe that God created mankind in His image: male (man) and female (woman), sexually different but with equal dignity,” the e-mail learn.

Citing scripture, the e-mail continued to say that “one’s biological sex must be affirmed and no attempts should be made to physical change, alter, or disagree with one’s biological gender.”

The communication additionally disavowed “any form of homosexuality, lesbianism, bisexuality, transgender identity/lifestyle, self-identification, bestiality, incest, fornication, adultery, and pornography.”

“Students who are found participating in these lifestyles will be asked to leave the school immediately.”

Founded in 1975, Grace Christian describes itself on its website as a “Christ-centered college-preparatory school” that goals to “provide the highest quality of education based on Biblical principles.” Former college students say that anti-LGBTQ attitudes on the school are nothing new.

“[My identity] was not something I could be open about,” an 18-year-old trans man, who graduated from Grace Christian final year, instructed NBC. 

“Only a select few of my friends could know about it. Sometimes, we couldn’t even know if we could trust people in our friend group because we didn’t know if anybody would say anything to faculty.”

One younger homosexual lady, additionally a latest graduate, mentioned that anti-LGBTQ rhetoric was used throughout school chapel hours.

She remembers McKeen “yelling about how if you’re gay you’re going to hell.”

She mentioned McKeen instructed college students “‘It’s Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve’” and threatened that LGBTQ college students could be “kicked out.” Her recollection of occasions was reportedly confirmed by two different former college students.

The pupil went on the describe how the school’s stance on gender and sexuality impacted its LGBTQ college students.

“One of my friends who is closeted, she gets very hurt by it and very scared,” she mentioned. 

“She has very bad anxiety about it.”

It wasn’t unusual, the previous pupil mentioned, for her buddy to “go into the bathroom and cry.” 

But whereas Grace Christian’s strategy to LGBTQ points was at all times express, McKeen’s electronic mail was the ultimate straw that prompted one household to take away their daughter, who’s homosexual, from the school.

“It’s not like my daughter goes around wearing rainbow flags or anything like that,” the teenager’s mom mentioned.

“But I’m not going to have her feel ashamed of herself for any reason.”

The teen described feeling like a “social outcast” at Grace Christian, whereas her new school, which can also be non secular, is way more accepting.

Josh Bell, government director of One Orlando Alliance, an LGBTQ nonprofit in central Florida, warned that insurance policies reminiscent of Grace Christian’s will result in emotional trauma and presumably bodily hazard for LGBTQ college students.

“We know from data, from surveys, from a long track record of LGBTQ youth, that policies like this are inherently harmful,” Bell instructed NBC.

Being instructed their identities are flawed by non secular authorities, he defined, solely compounds emotions of disgrace and self-loathing.

“When someone has religious authority there is an added layer of… severity to any teaching or any form of exclusion,” he mentioned.

“Because it’s not just saying, ‘I, as a leader, exclude you based on your identity.’ It’s saying, ‘The God that you believe in is excluding you based on your identity.’”

“Students who receive these messages are much more likely to experience depression, to experience suicidal ideations, to socially withdraw, to become vulnerable really to all sorts of harmful coping mechanisms.”

Grace Christian declined to touch upon the policy Friday.

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