FFRF stifles school board prayer in Paso Robles, Calif. (Dec. 10, 2014)

The Paso Robles School Board decided not to start including prayer in its meetings after the Freedom From Religion Foundation sent the board a letter of complaint.

Upon learning the board was considering instituting invocations, Staff Attorney Andrew Seidel wrote Board President Katy Griffin a letter, noting that the school context is different from the context of other government prayers, such as at city council meetings, the Supreme Court has deemed constitutional.

“Students and parents have the right—and often have reason—to go before or participate in school board meetings and deliberations. Fully 70 years of firm Supreme Court precedent bars religious indoctrination and rituals from public schools for the express purpose of protection of the rights of conscience of impressionable school children,” wrote Seidel.

FFRF’s complainant emailed Seidel on Dec. 10 to report that the board voted at its Dec. 9 meeting not to start their meetings with an invocation.

Freedom From Religion Foundation