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Texas Teacher Barred From School After Showing Students a Photo of Her Wife

At the start of the term at Charlotte Anderson Elementary School in Arlington, Tex., last year, Stacy Bailey, an art teacher, introduced herself to her new fourth grade students with a slide show of her life.

At the start of the term at Charlotte Anderson Elementary School in Arlington, Tex., last year, Stacy Bailey, an art teacher, introduced herself to her new fourth grade students with a slide show of her life.

 

There were photographs of her family, friends and childhood. There was also one of her partner of seven years, Julie Vazquez, who Ms. Bailey explained was her future wife. They were dressed in fish costumes from the film “Finding Nemo.”

 

That image set off a sequence of reactions from parents and school district officials that Ms. Bailey, 31, says amount to discrimination, according to a lawsuit filed on Tuesday in federal court in Dallas. She says her career was damaged when she was accused of showing inappropriate images to children, put on leave and told she would be transferred.

 

All for one main reason, the lawsuit says: “Plaintiff is lesbian/gay and was born that way.”

 

The Mansfield Independent School District, named as a defendant in the lawsuit along with two district officials, sees it differently. 

Natalie previously covered immigrant communities and environmental justice as a bilingual reporter at CityLab and CityLab Latino. She hails from the Los Angeles area and graduated from UCLA with a B.A. in English literature.
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