School Board prayers ended in a W. Va. county (December 9, 2022)

FFRF put a stop to opening prayers at the school district board meetings in Sutton, W. Va.

A concerned district parent informed FFRF that the Braxton County School District had been opening School Board meetings with a prayer led by board members. The report was then confirmed by official meeting agendas from the school board, listing “Opening Prayer” at the beginning of each meeting.

“The Supreme Court has consistently struck down prayers offered at school-sponsored events,” FFRF Staff Attorney Chris Line wrote in a letter to Board of Education President DeAnna Whipkey in April. “It is beyond the scope of a public school board to schedule or conduct prayer as part of its meetings.”

After following up with the school district in early December, FFRF received a reply from the new Board President Evelyn Post. Post confirmed that three new members were admitted to the board in July, as well as the inclusion of a new superintendent. Additionally, “[a]fter receipt of your communication last spring, our Board of Education never placed our nondenominational prayer on our meeting agendas.”


Freedom From Religion Foundation