Fired teacher accuses Valley Christian of gay bias - SanTan Sun News SanTan Sun News

Fired teacher accuses Valley Christian of gay bias

January 16th, 2023 SanTan Sun News
Fired teacher accuses Valley Christian of gay bias
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By Ken Sain
Managing Editor

Adam McDorman says that his Christian beliefs include acceptance and equality for all LGBT people and that God’s children should never discriminate or show hostility toward them.

The English teacher at a private Christian school in Chandler says he lost his job because of those beliefs.

In a twist, he is claiming in a lawsuit filed Dec. 27 that Valley Christian Schools in Chandler discriminated against him for his religious views. Usually religious schools make that claim when they are sued for anti-gay bias.

According to the federal suit, here’s what McDorman said led to his termination:

Last fall, a Valley Christian School student made a social media post saying they identified as pansexual, which means they are attracted to all genders or gender identities.

High school Principal Josh LeSage learned about the post and urged his staff at a Nov. 1 meeting to share the belief in the sinfulness of LGBT sexual orientation and that anyone who disagreed was like a cancer that needed to be removed from Valley Christian.

McDorman voiced his objection during a Nov. 3 department meeting, saying the school needs to find a better way to care for the school’s LGBT students and protect them from discrimination.

LeSage sent out an email later that day, saying he planned to meet with the student, whose parents were not invited.

In the email he wrote: “There is a hideous lie that “You can be both,” meaning homosexual and otherwise sexually deviant and also a Christian. God is clear that we cannot openly live in and celebrate our sin, much less elevate it to the status and being part of our identity and serve Christ at the same time. The very thought is so offensive.”

In the email he specifically mentioned McDorman, stating:

“We have a faculty member and a ‘central office’ employee who supposedly suggested in a meeting today that we invite a pastor of a local gay-friendly church to come and speak to our faculty to help us better understand this lifestyle and better minister to those kids we may have. Hell no! We are not doing that.”

McDorman claims he told LeSage on Nov. 8 he did not think that it was a good idea to exclude the student’s parents from his meeting with her.

The principal responded that he had a “problem” with Christians who identify as gay or gender nonbinary and met for several hours on the topic.

McDorman was fired the next day.

The student met with the principal and the school’s coordinator of student health and wellness soon afterward without the parents being present. The student recorded the conversation.

In the recording, LeSage tells the student that transgender people have a mutation in their brain. He said they’re not crazy, it’s biological.

He also said this:

“The homosexual community is shying away from the fact that most homosexual men did suffer sexual abuse as an adolescent. And there is solid scientific research outside of Bible circles, that shows your first sexual experience has a strong determining factor in what your sexual preferences are.

“So again, sin coming into the world, a boy is abused by a man, something happens in his brain that shifts and makes his preference cannot always, but can, give him a preference for men sexually.”

He also told the student, “Same-sex relations are an abomination to God.”

What he said appears to be consistent with school policy.

According to the lawsuit, the school’s Foundational Positions states, “Any form of sexual immorality (including adultery, fornication, homosexuality, lesbianism, bisexual conduct, bestiality, incest, pornography, and attempting to change one’s biological sex or acting upon any disagreement with one’s biological sex) or advocacy of sexual immorality, is sinful and offensive to God.”

The lawsuit claims the school deprived McDorman of his right to be free from discrimination based on his religious views. It says LeSage subjected McDorman to threats of discriminatory treatment.

His lawyer, Krista Robinson, said McDorman declined to be interviewed for this story. She said he is not working now and has taken his firing very hard.

Robinson also said that he was reluctant to file the lawsuit, and waited until the last day he could file to give the go-ahead.

A voice mail to LeSage’s phone asking for his side of the story was not returned.

McDorman also filed a discrimination charge with the Arizona Attorney General’s office.

Dan Kuiper, the head of schools for VCS, wrote in an email, “Since this is a pending lawsuit, we are not able to comment at this time. Our insurance company has not assigned a lawyer to the case.”

The lawsuit is seeking compensatory and punitive damages, back pay and lost benefits, and reasonable attorney’s and experts fees.