updated 2/28/2006 7:42:15 AM ET 2006-02-28T12:42:15

A New Jersey school board will allow Lily McBeth to return to the school where she taught for five years as a man.

To students at Eagleswood Elementary School, she used to be Mr. McBeth. The retired sales executive was married for 33 years and had three children before having sex-change surgery last year. She re-applied for her job as a substitute teacher under her new name.

Some parents object to McBeth's return to the school. One father predicts it will be "chaos" when the students learn of her gender-changing surgery. But a school board attorney says she is a good teacher who's gotten favorable reviews in the past.

McBeth calls the school board's decision "magnificent" and "democracy in action."

Copyright 2006 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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