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ICC Note: In yet another attempt to end any type of religious expression on public school campuses, the ACLU has written a letter to Bloomfield Hills Schools incorrectly suggesting a football coach was leading prayer, violating a speech policy that bans “prayer or references of any religious nature.” The Alliance Defending Freedom has stepped in and pointed out that the prayer was voluntary and actually being led by students who are protected under the First Amendment to their right to free speech.
7/17/2013 United States (Charisma) – Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) sent a Michigan school district a legal letter Friday after the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) formally complained about prayers at the conclusion of football games that school officials found to be voluntary and student-led.
“There’s no legitimate basis for public school officials to shut down students’ private religious speech,” says litigation counsel Rory Gray. “Students who express their faith before, during or after the school day are exercising their constitutional freedoms. Atheist groups are attempting to browbeat schools into believing otherwise.”
After the ACLU sent Bloomfield Hills Schools a letter incorrectly suggesting that a Lahser High School football coach was leading students in prayer after the conclusion of games, the district cited a speech policy banning “prayer or references of any religious nature … at school-sponsored events such as banquets, commencement, assemblies and programs” and attempted to prohibit the football team’s longstanding practice of voluntary, student-led prayer.
The school district has since verbally agreed to allow students to voluntarily pray after football games but has taken no steps to revise its policies to comply with the First Amendment.

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