Peter Vlaming, a Virginia French teacher, finds himself in the middle of a politically correct battle with the Virginia school system. Vlaming’s job was ripped out from under him after a split second decision to call a trans student ‘her’.
The student was reportedly about to walk into a wall when the teacher instinctively said ‘stop her’. And so his ridiculous fight to keep his job began.
That’s it… ‘stop her’, and a man’s livelihood is under fire. His religious beliefs- disregarded.
According to Virginia Times, the high school in West Point, a town in King William County about an hour east of Richmond, has about 265 students.
Vlaming, 47, who had taught at the school for almost seven years after spending more than a decade in France, told his superiors his Christian faith prevented him from using male pronouns for a student he saw as female.
The student’s family informed the school system of the transition over the summer. Vlaming said he had the student in class the year before when the student identified as female.
Vlaming agreed to use the student’s new, male name. But he tried to avoid using any pronouns — he or him, and she or her — when referring to the student. The student said that made him feel uncomfortable and singled out.
Administrators sided with the boy, telling Vlaming he could not treat his transgender pupil differently than he treats others.
“We do not and cannot tolerate discrimination in any form, or actions that create a hostile environment for any member of our school family,” they said in a statement. “Mr. Vlaming was asked repeatedly, over several weeks and by multiple administrators, to address a student by the pronouns with which this student identifies. The issue before us was not one mistaken slip of the tongue. Mr. Vlaming consistently refused to comply going forward — including in a statement made at the hearing — a willful violation of school board policy.”
Vlaming cited his Christian faith and told his superiors that he was willing to use the student’s name and simply avoid using feminine pronouns but he says the school rejected that compromise.
One parent pointed out that the school did not even have a specific policy in place in regard to the use of gender pronouns.
“If there’s no policy in place, how can they just let him go?” Jennifer Haynes, a 52-year-old West Point High parent, asked.
“That is not tolerance,” Vlaming said. “That is coercion.”
Speaking in his own defense, Vlaming said he loves and respects all his students and had tried to reach a solution based on “mutual tolerance.” That effort was rejected, he said, putting him at risk of losing his job for having views held by “most of the world for most of human history.”