A veteran biology professor who has for 2O years taught that sex is determined by chromosomes X and Y, has been fired after students walked out of his class, accusing him of ‘religious preaching’
Dr. Johnson Varkey who was teaching in Texas claimed his position at St. Philip’s College in San Antonio was terminated in 2022 following the incident.
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He said he was discussing the human reproductive system in November last year when four students stormed out of the lecture.
The Mail Online reports: Varkey was then accused of ‘discriminatory comments about homosexuals and transgender individuals, anti-abortion rhetoric, and misogynistic banter’.
The professor said he received an email from the Alamo Colleges District Human Resources department in January, which said his credentials would be revoked pending an investigation. He was later fired.
Lawyers from the First Liberty Institute representing Varkey sent a letter to St. Philip’s College last week to demand he be reinstated.
‘In January 2023, St. Philip’s College fired Dr. Varkey for teaching human biology just as he did in his previous twenty-year career as a professor,’ it read.
‘His statements are not only supported by his extensive education and experience, but they also reflect his sincerely held religious beliefs.’
The law firm argued the firing of Varkey, who taught Human Anatomy and Physiology at the college for 22 years, was against federal and state law and it targeted his First Amendment rights.
Varkey is also an associate pastor at a local church and a devout Christian who follows the religion’s teachings on sexuality and abortion.
But his attorney’s added he has not expressed any of those beliefs in the classroom.
‘As his stellar performance reviews suggest, Dr. Varkey gladly taught students of all beliefs and backgrounds,’ the letter continued.
‘Throughout his employment, he never discussed with any student his personal views — religious or otherwise — on human gender or sexuality.’
‘On November 28, 2022, four of Dr. Varkey’s students walked out of his class when he stated, consistent with his study of human biology and his religious beliefs, that sex was determined by chromosomes X and Y.’
The lawyers argued Varkey taught from school-approved and science-based curriculum, but the college claimed his teaching was religious.
‘While some of the subject matter may be connected to class content, it was very clear, from the complaints, that you pushed beyond the bounds of academic freedom with your personal opinions that were offensive to many individuals in the classroom,’ school officials told him in a letter.
Varkey was informed that he was not scheduled to teach in the spring and that he wouldn’t have any further teaching opportunities at St. Philip’s College.
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