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A private Christian school in Florida told parents ahead of the coming school year that students will only be identified by their “biological sex” and said that students who are found “participating” in gay or transgender lifestyles will be asked to “leave the school immediately.”
“We believe that God created mankind in His image: male (man) and female (woman), sexually different but with equal dignity,” the email sent by Grace Christian School Administrator Barry McKeen to school community in June reads, according to NBC News.
“Therefore, one’s biological sex must be affirmed and no attempts should be made to physically change, alter, or disagree with one’s biological gender — including, but not limited to, elective sex reassignment, transvestite, transgender, or non-binary gender fluid acts of conduct (Genesis 1:26-28). Students in school will be referred to by the gender on their birth certificate and be referenced in name in the same fashion,” the email continued.
The private Christian school is located in Valrico, Florida, which is less than 20 miles outside of Tampa. NBC News obtained a copy of the email, which was sent to parents on June 6 with the subject line, “Important School Policy Point of Emphasis. … Please Read.”
The email to parents states that the policies on gay and transgender issues are not new, but that parents “have to agree to all policies and procedures before your student may start school in August.”
“Students who are found participating in these lifestyles will be asked to leave the school immediately,” the email added.
One mother said she pulled her high school daughter, who identifies as lesbian, from the school following the email.
“I actually respect their opinion,” the mom, who asked to conceal her identity for fear of harassment, told WFLA, “but my daughter’s wellbeing, right, and mental health is more important.”
The unidentified mother said the policy is not a new one from what she has read, but said she was unaware of the rule until now. She told the outlet that she has sent all of her children to Grace Christian, but would not send her youngest daughter back to the school for her junior year.
“She was scared she was gonna open her mouth and expose herself … but she’s not scared anymore,” the mother said.
Grace Christian describes itself as “a Christ-centered, college-preparatory school serving the Greater Tampa Bay area students that attend in grades Kindergarten through grade 12,” according to its website. The school was founded in 1975 by congregants of Grace Community Church, which is an independent Bible church.
The school posted a response video to the NBC News article, where McKeen cited scripture and doubled down that the policy is nothing new and will remain in place. McKeen noted that he chose not to speak with the NBC News reporter, explaining “I think it was clear from the get-go that this person is not for us, but against us.”
“It is true that a student can not come to our school … and be transgender or homosexual. This is rooted in scriptures,” he said in the video. “God has spoken on those issues, explicitly, aggressively, and we have had these policies in our school since day number one in the early 1970s. This is not new.”
“We are not a hateful group of people. We don’t hate students who are of a particular persuasion,” he added in the video.
The school did not immediately respond to Fox News Digital’s request for comment on the policy on Sunday.