Sep 19, 2011
Date Resolved

AU received a complaint from a student at Challenger Early College High School that an English teacher at the school was proselytizing students and posting religious displays in his classroom. AU wrote the school district objecting to both practices and our complainant reported that the displays were removed and that the teacher’s religious rhetoric had been toned down. However, less than a month later we were informed that religious content had begun to recur in the class. We wrote a follow-up letter informing the school and requesting that they monitor the teacher’s compliance with constitutional requirements. Finally, in June 2009 we were directed to an audio recording of a lecture, given by the same teacher, attacking evolution — calling it a "fairy-tale" and suggesting that teachers who presented it were lying to students — and advancing an explicitly creationist world view. AU wrote a third letter to the school district, pointing out the recording and informing the district that it could be held responsible for the teacher’s repeated unconstitutional actions. We received a response from the school district that it had begun an investigation into the teacher’s conduct, and we subsequently learned that the district had declined to offer the teacher tenure and that he had resigned as a result.