A coach at West Linn High School in Tualatin, Ore., will no longer participate in team prayer. FFRF received a complaint last fall that Assistant Coach Art Williams would regularly join a circle of football players to bow his head in prayer.
FFRF Staff Attorney Andrew Seidel send a letter Sept. 24 to Dr. William Rhodes, superintendent, requesting that all coach-led prayer cease immediately: “West Linn High School and its coaches should be aware of the tremendous influence coaches have on their athletes. Parents trust their children to the coaches’ charge and coaches - through their own example - must be sure that athletes are not only treated fairly but also imbued with a sense of community and camaraderie.”
On Oct. 15, an attorney representing the West Linn-Wilsonville School District responded that Coach Williams was directed not to join students in prayer.