Monday, December 22, 2008

No, Christ isn't allowed in Christmas

6th-grader's teacher says Jesus can't be mentioned in holiday poem:
"A public school teacher in Mississippi marked down an eleven-year-old's Christmas poem assignment and told the boy to rewrite it because he used the word "Jesus," which, the instructor explained, is a name not allowed in school.

Liberty Counsel, a non-profit organization dedicated to advancing religious freedom, reports that sixth-grader Andrew White of Hattiesburg, Miss., chose to write the poem on the assignment "What Christmas means to me." After White turned in his rough draft, however, his teacher circled the word "Jesus" and deducted a point from his grade. The teacher then explained that he needed to rewrite the poem without the offending word.

When White's parents questioned the teacher, Liberty Counsel reports, they received a response email explaining, "[Andrew] and another child did a poem about Christ. I know we can't discuss these type [sic] of things in school so I asked the two of them to do another poem of their choice."

Mathew D. Staver, founder of Liberty Counsel and dean of Liberty University School of Law, expressed dismay that despite many legal clarifications on the issue, there are still educationl officials that mistakenly believe students can't speak of their faith at school. "Some educators need education that the story of Christmas is not banned from public schools," Staver said in a statement.

The principal at White's Thames Elementary School agreed with Staver. After White's parents encouraged Andrew to turn in his first, unedited poem, Principal Carrie Hornsby changed the boy's grade to a 100 and conceded that there was nothing improper in using Jesus' name. Hornsby also coordinated a mailing to all the school's parents, explaining that students' religious expression is permitted under federal guidelines.



Anonymous said...

1. what action was taken against this teacher and whomever instituted this policy?

2. is this teacher a member of the communist-inspired teachers union?

3. does the student's family plan to sue everybody connected with this indoctrination camp?

4. will the American people ever regain their common sense?

Anonymous said...

The youngster should have substituted ALLAH for Jesus.

That would have passed muster since Islam is immune from censorship.

Anonymous said...

Teachers is stupid.

Anonymous said...

I used to teach in public schools in Alabama, and as required by the course of study, we studied all the five major religions. When we got to Christianity (right after we studied Judaism), one student remarked "You can't study religion in school!" I promptly replied "Child the ACLU sure got you good didn't they!" We spent two days before going on actually looking at the first amendment and the language that was used. By the end of it, everyone in the class was fully aware that you could indeed say "The C word" in public school We studied Christianity thoroughly, then studied the mass murder of innocents and the indoctrination of millions, I mean Islam. The students were not too shocked given current events, and even contributed greatly to the discussion.

Anonymous said...

It amazes me that those who have chosen teaching as a profession have such little knowledge of the constitution or common sense.

Anonymous said...

...the assignment "What Christmas means to me."

Oh, come on. Could the teacher be any more ambiguous? A student could write anything, and should get a 100% for any content written. Can't the teacher come up with something more creative? Pretty pathetic teacher. No wonder our kids today have minds of mush.

And removing "Christ" from Christmas? I'm speechless. Liberals really have no business being involved in religion because they have no conception of absolutes.

Anonymous said...

SOMEBODY (either the school or the parents and Liberty Counsel) ain't telling the truth:

Written by Jas N Smith
Saturday, 20 December 2008 07:27
On December 3, 2008, a sixth-grade teacher at Thames Elementary received rough drafts of an assignment from two students on “What Christmas Means to Me” that both mentioned Jesus. The poems were to be posted in the hallway, and the teacher was fearful of a possible violation of the separation of church and state. The teacher went to her academic coach for guidance. The academic coach assured the teacher that because the mention of Jesus was completely student-originated that there was no issue. The teacher returned the drafts with an “OK” written on them and told the students they were “good to go.”

On the due date, only one student turned in the final draft of the assignment. The other student turned in the assignment late and was given a 5-point late penalty. After a discussion of the situation with the parents and the teacher, the principal decided to wave the late penalty, and the student received full credit for the poem.

On December 18 all the poems were posted for everyone to see, including both of the poems that mentioned Jesus.

The teacher acted with an abundance of caution in an attempt to make sure that she was not violating the law or school policy.

The Hattiesburg Public School District takes very seriously the duty we are given to educate children and to give them opportunities to express themselves and their ideas. We understand that student beliefs are important, but we must be mindful and sensitive to the beliefs of all of our students.

We believe the situation was handled in an appropriate manner, but we will offer further guidance to any employee on the issue of student religious expression at school.