A middle-school chorus teacher has filed a federal discrimination lawsuit in Kentucky, claiming his position was terminated after he came out as bisexual.

Nicholas Breiner was a teacher at McNabb Middle School for three years, as well as director of vocal music and head of the theater department, when he decided to share his truth in an April 2017 Instagram that is now private. His hope was to support LGBT students who had been suicidal.

“I felt that they needed to know there was someone in the room that understood and supported them, regardless of who they were,” he wrote. As terrifying as it was to admit, I had to value someone else’s well-being over my own privacy.”

Three days after posting his Instagram, Breiner says, he was called in for a meeting with Principal Paula Stafford and Deputy Superintendent Rick Culross where the topic of his sexual orientation was discussed. “I was cautioned that ‘we live in a small town.’”

One month later Breiner found out his contract wasn’t being renewed.

Montgomery County Superintendent Matthew Thompson told the Lexington Herald-Leader Breiner’s departure “was not in part, or in whole, because of his sexual orientation.”

Breiner claims Stafford told him it was due to “budget constraints,” but he soon learned his position had been filled by a heterosexual woman.

He submitted a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission in August and filed suit against the Montgomery County Board of Education last week. He is seeking reinstatement, compensatory and punitive damages, and back pay.

Jeff Taylor is a North Carolina-based journalist who writes for LGBTQ Nation, Q Notes and other outlets.

@jefftaylorhuman