Skip to comments.12 Washington State High School Students Suspended for Public Prayer Group
Posted on 03/07/2007 7:48:42 AM PST by csistrueblue
12 Washington State High School Students Suspended for Public Prayer Group
By Gudrun Schultz
VANCOUVER, Washington, March 6, 2007 (LifeSiteNews.com) - A number of students who formed an interdenominational prayer group at a Washington state high school were expelled by the administration last week over their refusal to hold a morning prayer session in a closed room, The Columbian reported March 2.
Twelve students at Heritage High School in Vancouver, WA, were suspended last Friday after continuing to meet for morning prayer in the commons area of the school, despite a faculty order that they stop causing physical "disruption" to student traffic with public prayer.
To express concerns, contact:
Heritage High School 7825 NE 130th Avenue, Vancouver, WA 98682
Phone: (360) 604-3400
Principal: Anne Sosky firstname.lastname@example.org
Its a sad commentary on our culture.....the dark side uses political correctness against the good guys.
I hope that school district has a sizable legal fees budget.
But how God centered is this country? I believe,personal opinion,people who call themselves Christians are not at all Christians. For the most part! When millions of children killed every day through abortion,even outside the womb,where is the screaming outcry for the deaths of these children. I mean we are talking about millions of children. And then of course we have the homosexual agenda that is thriving quite well. How many Christian churches today are now condoning both of these issues, I mean sins, as no big deal! Little by little Christians are being persecuted for a more ecumenical faith of whatever.And the result abortion and homosexuals getting married and how many people take sacred vows to marry over and over.As far as Muslims praying and Christians praying in the common areas,would they be treated the same? No because this country is more about putting Christians in the back of the room. Why I think is because they are afraid of the Muslims either through lawsuits or terror attacks or they do not like the truth that Jesus was about.When the apostles went out to preach look what happened to them. I am afraid that one day we too will be in that same situation. Maybe not lions but hey we are getting pretty good at the whole mercy killing thing.lol In other words people may think little things effecting the faith of Christians is no big deal but they are.Little by little things happen over time and people get used to them and then we ask how did this happen.
I would think punishment. It shows up in their school records and may effect their choices for colleges...
hmmm.... maybe not... : )
Of course there was public preaching,look at John the Baptist.And if I remember right Jesus was quite fond of him and did not say anything negative of he did. Of course he lost his head! And what about all the multitudes Jesus preached to.
The tragedy of the commons lies not so much in the loss of the commons but in its possession.
Why FReep'em. The Kids were wrong. If their intent was to pray...they had the opportunity to do so.
It appears that their intent was vain.
But the visibility, in this case, is aimed at making participation easier for shy kids who might hesitate to go to an assigned room to participate in a formal club activity. Doing this as an informal activity in a public place makes it easy for the hesitant to "sort of" participate, tentatively, hanging around the edges briefly, etc. It's often difficult for kids to join a new peer group in high school, even though many want to. Many fear rejection and some have actually been rejected when they tried. In a big public high school, many students who've been part of the mainstream school culture may imagine religious students to be very judgmental, and imagine that going to a formal group meeting would involve being lectured about sex, clothing, etc. or being pressured to participate in confessional type "sharing" discussions, or to declare religious commitment in a specific way.
I'm just not convinced that a dozen or even 2-3 dozen students standing around for a few minutes before school starts, in what must be the massive cafeteria of a 2200 student school, are being disruptive in any way, to "traffic" or anything else. And if they're not being disruptive, there's no need to push them into an assigned room. I'm just picturing the ordinary scenes around a large public high school shortly before classes begin, and the huge number of kids invariably roaming or hanging around in public areas, and I just can't picture how this group could be disruptive unless they were parked smack in the middle of a hallway and refusing to let people by, or praying at the top of their lungs to drown out normal conversation.
We had one of these at my high school. Totally voluntary and not faculty organized. As an Atheist, I don't see what this principal's problem is.
> As an Atheist, I don't see what this principal's problem is.
Try reading post #71, especially the last bit quoted below:
Theyre in the middle of a very busy area, grouped together, so others couldnt get around, he said. Other kids cannot avoid it. Thats not appropriate, whether theyre praying or whatever theyre doing.
Didn't Jesus say something about praying out of doors?
Actually, they were denied ANY meeting location on campus. In this case, the students (who are allowed in the cafeteria before school anyway) decided to sit together and pray - I guess that was offensive to the Satanist student who turned them in...
But there is the rub - who and what decides what "obstruct" means. In this case, from what I have heard and read, there was no obstruction. The praying students were just in a public location in the cafeteria which is perfectly acceptable at that school. The problem is that they chose to pray. Apparently, that is the crime of "obstructing" traffic - they were VISIBLE.
Some pretty conflicting reports in this case going around - one says they were asked to use a "closed" room (which in most schools would be a no-no unless they had a faculty adviser. But this being a prayer group, I don't know if that would be allowed...
While other reports say that they had REQUESTED a room to use and were denied the use of a room.
Something is wrong - and as my distrust of public schools is rather strong (and I teach at a public school!), I tend to not trust the administration in this case.
Not surprising considering that the Puget Sound region is known to be the least religious area in the U.S. Another badge of shame for Washington State.
I agree with most of what you say. But you can't make an exception for one group, no matter who they happen to be. Other groups will want to meet in the Commons area too. Even if it isn't disruptive now, the end result of letting one group meet there will be.
Possibly, and it would make sense to issue a blanket policy if and when that happens. Frankly I doubt it would, because the more groups meeting there at the same time, the fewer would find it a suitable place. It seems to be working for the prayer group now, but I imagine if a couple dozen other groups were all meeting there at the same time, including some loudly debating groups, they'd choose another spot. I have to think, though, that the cafeteria in a school this large, could accommodate quite a lot of students without any interference in "traffic" or other school operations. I mean how on earth do they manage the "traffic" problem at lunchtime??
Wonder if they take the same approach to football players, cheerleaders, band members and others who travel enmasse?
A common area is not a hallway. If there was enough room for them to move "further back" it's not a hallway.
My niece experience something similar a few years ago. The high school she attended was participating in the Meet Me at the Flag Pole, which started 45 minutes before school. Some of the staff complained that a prayerful show of solidarity was some how offensive to students and teachers who were not of a like mind. The PC principal went along...
> The PC principal went along...
Then he was wrong and should have been called on it.
The right to pray doesn't include, though, the right to impede others going about their business anymore than the right to peaceably assemble gives the left wing kooks the right to shut down traffic on a busy street.