Wednesday, January 09, 2013

School Tells Atheists Jesus Portrait Will Stay

The Wisconsin-based Freedom from Religion Foundation says that a painting of Jesus, hanging in a hallway since 1947 at Jackson Middle School in Jackson, Ohio, is unconstitutional.  In response, school Superintendent Phil Howard told a cheering crowd of over 500 people at last night's School Board meeting that the portrait will NOT be removed.

For background, read about myriad atheist attacks on Christianity via public schools

UPDATE 4/3/13: Fearing legal costs, school gives in, removes portrait; atheists win battle

-- From "'Amen' Heard When Superintendent Says Jesus Will Stay" by Felicia Tackett, Jackson County Times-Journal 1/9/13

Estimates of 550 to 600 members of the community showed up at Tuesday night's Jackson City School Board meeting to show their support for the administration's decision to keep the picture of Jesus Christ hanging in its place of honor in Jackson Middle School.

There were eruptions of applause when some of the speakers spoke in support of keeping the picture in place, and in spite of warnings from Board President Randy Evans to be respectful of everyone who spoke, there were some boo's heard from the crowd when the three opposed to the picture had their say.

[Supt.] Howard also showed a framed poster of America's motto, "In God We Trust," and Ohio's motto of "With God, All Things Are Possible," and explained that under ORC 3313.801 it states: If a copy of the official motto of the United States of America 'In God We Trust' or the official motto of Ohio 'With God, All Things Are Possible' is donated to any school district, or if money is donated to the district specifically for the purpose of purchasing such material, the board of education of the school district shall accept the donation and display the motto in an appropriate manner.

To read the entire article above, CLICK HERE.

From "300 turn out to support portrait of Jesus at Jackson school" by Randy Ludlow and Jim Woods, The Columbus Dispatch 1/8/13

The leader of Jackson City Schools said it would take a higher authority than the Freedom From Religion Foundation to force the painting’s removal after 65 years.

Superintendent Phil Howard told the crowd at Jackson High School that “we’re not violating the law and the picture is legal because it has historical significance. It hasn’t hurt anyone.”

Howard earlier told Chillicothe radio station WKKJ that it would take a court order to remove the picture and said that the painting is permissible because it was provided by a student club and is displayed among other pictures in a “hall of honor.”

To read the entire article above, CLICK HERE.

From "Atheist Group Threatens Ohio School With Suit Over Jesus Portrait" by Michael Gryboski, Christian Post Reporter 1/7/13

A Wisconsin-based atheist organization has threatened a middle school in Ohio with a lawsuit should school officials not remove a portrait of Jesus Christ from a hallway.

Phil Howard, district superintendent for Jackson City Schools, said in an interview with WKKJ that the Jesus portrait was one of several pictures on the "Hall of Honor" display at Jackson Middle. These pictures include a variety of other faces, including distinguished alumni and influential historical figures.

"I'm certainly not going to run down there and take the picture down because some group from Madison, Wisconsin, who knows nothing about the culture of our community or why the picture is even there, wants me to take it down," said Howard.

To read the entire article above, CLICK HERE.