Ex-teacher files lawsuit against Chandler school for discrimination against LGBTQ+ students

Lawyers allege the school fired Adam McDorman because his belief in accepting all LGBTQ+ people conflicted with the school’s beliefs.
Published: Dec. 29, 2022 at 4:24 PM MST|Updated: Dec. 29, 2022 at 8:45 PM MST
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CHANDLER, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) -- A former teacher is suing a Chandler Christian school, stating he stood up against the school’s discrimination toward LGBTQ+ students and was fired.

The lawsuit says Adam McDorman was a teacher at Valley Christian Schools when, in the fall of 2021, one of McDorman’s students posted on social media that they identified as pansexual. Valley Christian Schools principal Josh LeSage found out about the student’s sexual orientation and called a staff meeting on Nov. 1, 2021. The lawsuit alleges LeSage said all staff members should have the same religious belief “in the sinfulness of LGBT sexual orientation” and anyone who disagreed “was like a cancer that needed to be removed.” McDorman disagreed with the comments made by LeSage and suggested a better way to care for the school’s LGBTQ+ students.

Two days after the staff meeting, LeSage sent an email to staff, saying he planned to meet with the student without their parents present to talk about their sexual orientation. His email reportedly contained discriminatory statements, with one part reading, “There is a hideous lie that “You can be both,” meaning a homosexual or otherwise sexually deviant and also a Christian...the very thought is so offensive.” The lawsuit states McDorman disagreed with the statements, suggesting to invite a pastor of a gay-friendly church to speak with students, to which LeSage wrote, “Hell no! We are not doing that.”

On Nov. 8, LeSage shared his plans again to meet with the student, but the two clashed. The lawsuit says LeSage didn’t take McDorman’s advice and said he had a “problem” with Christians who identified as gay or nonbinary. McDorman reportedly tried to convince LeSage to be more accepting of LGBTQ+ students. The next day, McDorman was fired.

The lawsuit states LeSage and the school’s Student Health and Wellness Coordinator, Chizzy Anderson, met with the student without their parent’s knowledge. The student recorded the conversation between the group. Lawyers say Anderson told the student, “transgender people actually have a mutation in their brain,” and LeSage said, “same-sex relations are an abomination to God.”

Lawyers allege the school fired McDorman because his belief in accepting all LGBTQ+ people conflicted with the school’s beliefs and LeSage’s discrimination. Arizona’s Family has reached out to Valley Christian Schools for a statement but haven’t heard back. However, in a section on the school’s website, the school says homosexuality is a sin and students who “believe or practice it” will not be retained.