Texas district halts teacher’s use of Christian e-mail signature

Following a complaint from the Freedom From Religion Foundation (Jan. 5, 2010), a high school teacher in a Texas school district was instructed to no longer include religious quotes and references in his district e-mail signature line. The signature line had varied biblical verses, and at one time read: "We know that our old self was crucified with him, so that our sinful body might be done away with, that we might no longer be in slavery to sin. Romans 6:6." The teacher had regularly sent e-mails to students and parents with biblical passages and citations. FFRF Staff Attorney Rebecca Markert wrote the district that it was "grossly inappropriate" for this teacher to use his public district e-mail account to promote his personal religious views, especially to students. On July 21, 2010, the McKinney Independent School District assured the Foundation that the teacher had been warned verbally and in writing over the issue. Amidst other concerns, the letter stated that the teacher will not return for the 2010-2011 school year. Additionally, the district adopted an e-mail signature-line policy restricting all district electronic communication signatures to name, title and contact information.

Freedom From Religion Foundation