Thirty-six-year-old Shawn Loftis spent six years in the gay porn industry as an actor, director and owner of his own company, World of Men, but decided he was done in 2010.
He thought he had left it in the past, until he got his first substitute teaching job at Nautilus Middle School in Miami Beach.
The school’s principal went on a “moral crusade” against him, Loftis said, and he was fired for violating the Miami-Dade School Board's code of ethics and for gross immorality. That led to the Florida Department of Education’s decision in November to deny Loftis from getting a teaching certificate for five years.
“Porn is not moral turpitude,” he said.
Last Friday, the state’s Education Practices Commission agreed when Loftis, who has a master’s degree in public administration, went before the members to fight to get his job back. Some voiced their support.
“They're aren't that many teachers with master’s degrees, there aren’t that many teachers that can bring the experiences that he’s had in his life – forget the six years of his porn past,” Loftis said.
The reversal will allow Loftis to pursue a teaching certificate. He has already passed the exam, so now all he needs is a teaching job.
“I just hope that is a position comes available at Miami Beach High, that is where I really want to be,” he said.
However, Miami-Dade Public Schools spokesman John Schuster told NBC 6 "the certificate does not guarantee employment."
Loftis said he has a message for parents.
“If the kids ever brought it into my class, I would talk to them about how it was not one of my better decisions, and that they have to keep on a right track, that they have to go to college, they have to live within their means,” he said.