Australia Education News & Commentary

Teacher unwilling to support and teach Christian beliefs about marriage in a Christian school sues for discrimination

A Victorian teacher who was allegedly unwilling to adhere to a Christian school’s Statement of Faith which defined marriage as a union “only between a male and female” is suing her former employer for discrimination.

Rachel Colvin, a former teacher at Ballarat Christian College, has lodged a complaint with the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal, alleging the school forced her to quit after she refused to adhere to the school’s policy opposing same-sex marriage.

According to the Weekend Australian, the school updated its Statement of Faith following the legal redefining of marriage back in December 2017. The amendment outlined the school’s position on marriage, stating: “A marriage can only be between a male and female, and upon this foundation alone should children be conceived and families formed.”

The Australian reports:

The teacher formally notified the school of her objections to the statement in a letter on August 14, and was directed to meet with the chaplain and a female member of the school leadership to discuss her views. The college indicated she was free to hold her views personally but was required to support and teach in accordance with the beliefs of the school, which Ms Colvin was allegedly unwilling to do.

The redefining of marriage in Australia was sold with the promise that changing the legal definition would have no negative impact on those who recognise marriage was instituted and defined by God at creation (Gen. 2:24) and reaffirmed by Jesus in the Gospels (Matt. 19:5).

We were told Christian schools, in particular, would not be affected by the change. Now we have a Christian school, which by definition, grounds its ethos and beliefs on the Bible, being threatened for allegedly not employing individuals who do not share, and therefore, will not advance, the school’s core beliefs and values.

It turns out a lot of people owe Lyle Shelton an apology. The former leader of the Australian Christian Lobby was one of the few public voices to warn that this very thing would happen as a result of changing the definition of marriage.

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