Minn. teacher to stop promoting religious events (January/February 2024)

A Menahga (Minn.) Public Schools teacher will no longer use her position to participate and organize a Christian event.

A community member reported that a teacher at Menahga High School helped promote and run a religious student event, See You at the Pole, on Sept. 27, 2023. The event was described as a “global day of student prayer,” in which students are encouraged to meet at their school’s flagpole and pray before school. The event is run by a Christian organization and is explicitly Christian in nature. The teacher posted on their personal Facebook page promoting the event and implied that other school staff would be participating.

“While MPS cannot prohibit students from organizing or participating in a prayer event, the Supreme Court has stated that public school staff members must refrain from participating in the religious activities of students while acting within their governmental jobs,” FFRF Legal Fellow Sammi Lawrence wrote to Superintendent Jason Kjos.

In response, Kjos conducted an investigation into the event. “I have interviewed and met with the staff member who posted about the “See You at the Pole” event and we have reviewed policy requirements together,” he wrote.

Freedom From Religion Foundation