Former Humble ISD substitute said she was fired after students accused her of trying to ‘pray away the gay’

HUMBLE – Stella Neal said she was not only devastated but also humiliated when she was terminated and escorted off the Summer Creek High School campus last November.

She claims she was fired over a prayer that never even happened.

At 73 years old, Neal said she has spent nearly the last five decades doing what she loves.

“I just wanted to make a difference,” she said. “I always wanted to be a teacher. I did fulfill my dream.”

She said after retiring from a 30-plus year career with HISD, she returned to work as a substitute teacher.

In 2009, Neal said she started at Summer Creek HS in Humble, but last year on Nov. 11, her position there came to an abrupt end.

“Forty-seven years, multiple school districts, and not a spot or blemish on her record, and you throw this woman away with no proof? Not a thorough investigation, denying her due process?” asked Neal’s advocate, Quanell X.

Neal and Quanell X showed KPRC 2 paperwork they say details an investigation by Humble ISD where students claim that back on Nov. 4, Neal had a boy stay after class as she called her pastor to pray for him because he was gay.

She said she has proof that’s not true.

“I’m holding a letter from my pastor, to whom it may concern, and it’s describing that he has never ever prayed for a student at any campus I worked at,” Neal read.

Neal also showed us a call log she says proves she never even called her pastor that day.

“His number is not on here at all,” Neal said.

As an experienced public-school educator, Neal said she understands prayer is not allowed in school. She adds she didn’t know about the kids’ sexuality and thinks they had another reason to get her fired.

“I’m thinking these kids fabricated these allegations on me because, in a way, I’m a strict disciplinarian,” Neal said.

Humble ISD confirmed Neal was an employee until Nov. 11, but would not comment on the issue, saying all matters related to district personnel are handled internally.

Meanwhile, Neal and Quanell X said they are appealing her termination. She wants her job back and her name cleared.

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