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Alabama school district bans student-led prayer at games

September 25, 2017 / Athletic AdministrationCoaching
An Alabama school district has implemented a ban on student-led prayer at games after a parent complained following the football team’s season opener.

Lee County Schools received a letter in August from the Freedom From Religion Foundation. The letter said that a parent had complained students at Smiths Station High School were leading a prayer over the public address system, and it urged the district to immediately end prayer at all school-sponsored events. Click here to read the full letter.

Lee County Schools complied and banned student-led prayer at all four of its high schools. 

During last week’s game, students held a “prayer protest” and recited the Lord’s Prayer out loud before Smiths Station took on Phenix City, according to Fox 5.

From the article:

“It shook me so bad. I never imagined that God could be taken out of our community,” said Katie Johnson, a student who wrote a personal prayer and read it before the start of one of her high school’s home games, this season. 

Johnson said, however, she respected the decision. “it’s the right decision. As much as we don’t like it, we have to think about aspects of every religion,” she said.

The Supreme Court ruled in 2000 that student-led prayer at football games is a violation of the Establishment Clause in the First Amendment. Public school districts have widely used that decision to regulate prayer at all school-sanctioned events, but it continues to be a debated subject at districts across the nation.

Click here to read more.

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