LEESBURG, Va. — A P.E. teacher who was suspended after declaring he would not use a transgender child’s preferred pronouns has been permanently reinstated.

The Loudoun County school board also will pay some of the legal fees of physical education instructor Tanner Cross, the Washington Post reported.

Cross, who works at Leesburg Elementary, was suspended after he denounced the county’s transgender policy at a May school board meeting, declaring he would never use a transgender child’s pronouns.

“I serve God first and I will not affirm that a biological boy can be a girl and vice versa because it’s against my religion,” he said. “It’s lying to a child, it’s abuse to a child, and it’s sinning against our God.”

Cross sued in June, alleging officials violated his rights to free speech and the free exercise of religion.

Cross was reinstated while the suit proceeded, and on Monday, a judge granted Cross a permanent injunction to be reinstated to his teaching position. The school board agreed to remove the suspension from Cross’ personnel file and pay $20,000 to help cover legal fees.

Price & Product Availability Tracker

Discover where products are available & compare prices

A Loudoun schools spokesman didn’t immediately respond to the newspaper’s request for comment.

Other claims will proceed in Cross’ suit, which was amended to seek the transgender policy’s repeal. Alliance Defending Freedom, which represents Cross, sought a temporary injunction to prevent enforcement of the policy. The judge didn’t rule Monday, but indicated that he might rule between Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Loudoun County schools’ policies on racism and diversity were frequently cited by advocates of the “parents matter” movement that became a major factor in the Virginia gubernatorial race. Democrat Terry McAuliffe won Loudoun County, but his opponent Glenn Youngkin tapped into parents’ outrage to make inroads into other blue areas of the state and ended up winning the election.