MANSFIELD (CBSDFW.COM) – A Mansfield ISD teacher filed a federal discrimination suit against the school district Tuesday.
Stacy Bailey is an art teacher for Charlotte Anderson Elementary School. She has remained on paid administrative leave since September, after a parent claimed Bailey discussed her sexual orientation with students.
“Ms. Bailey has refused to follow administration’s directions regarding age-appropriate conversations with students,” a school district issued statement said in March. Bailey said she introduced photos of her family to students, including images of her now wife, as part of a sharing day at the start of the school year.
Bailey is Lesbian.
She has denied ongoing conversations with children about her sexual orientation. Last week, MISD officials renewed her contract, and planned to transfer Bailey to a secondary school. Instead, Bailey filed a sexual orientation discrimination suit.
“Stacy is filing this lawsuit and taking this action in hopes of pushing Mansfield out of the shadows of discrimination and into the sunshine of equal rights,” her attorney Jason Smith said. “It’s shocking and disappointing. Mansfield district officials treated my wife differently when she spoke about her family, just as every teacher does,” wife Julie Vasquez said.
The lawsuit filing claims the district discriminated against Bailey based on her sexual orientation and status as a lesbian, in violation of the 14th Amendment Equal Protection clause of the Constitution.
MISD issued a statement Tuesday:
“The Mansfield Independent School District categorically denies the allegations in the lawsuit filed today by Stacy Bailey. Once facts are fully known and parties deposed, we are confident this lawsuit will not warrant merit.
Mrs. Bailey has has taught with Mansfield ISD for a decade. During her tenure with the district, there has never been an issue with her open sexual preferences until this year. That’s when her actions in the classroom changed, which prompted her students to voice concerns to their parents.”