Tribunal reserves decision in sacked Christian teacher's religious freedom case

Kristie Higgs was dismissed after sharing two Facebook posts(Photo: Christian Legal Centre)

An employment tribunal has reserved its judgement in the case of a Christian teacher sacked after sharing Facebook posts critical of teaching young children about LGBT relationships. 

Kristie Higgs, 44, challenged her sacking in a four-day hearing at the tribunal in Bristol last week.

She was defended by the Christian Legal Centre in her case against Farmor's School in Fairford, Gloucestershire, which she claims breached religious freedom and free speech laws by dismissing her after receiving a complaint over the posts. 

The committed Christian shared two Facebook posts using her maiden name in October 2018, one of them a petition challenging the Relationships and Sex Education (RSE) curriculum, and the other an article about the prevalence of transgender ideology in children's books in American schools. 

She was investigated over the posts before being dismissed by the school in January 2019. 

The school denies any wrongdoing and claimed during the tribunal last week that her dismissal was not about her beliefs. 

"We were not concerned with Mrs Higgs's religious beliefs. We were concerned with the manner in which those beliefs were expressed," said school governor Stephen Conlan, according to the Press Association. 

"You can post your beliefs without posting this sort of language and it is perfectly possible to communicate your beliefs without using such strong language."

Mrs Higgs said she had done nothing wrong and argued that she should be free to share her Christian beliefs. 

"I just don't think what I did was wrong on social media. This is what I thought - they are brainwashing our children," she said.

"I shared these posts for information and my Christian belief is that God says marriage is between a man and a woman.

"God's law says they cannot change their gender, the law says they can. This does not mean you have to accept it. It doesn't mean I hate them, or they are not my friends."