Written by Don Byrd
Faced with a lawsuit alleging sweeping religious liberty violations, school officials in Louisiana’s Bossier Parish have announced new staff training programs and changes in policy to ensure that the rights of students and parents are protected. The lawsuit, filed earlier this month, claims the school district improperly promotes Christianity in classes, clubs, music programs, and on athletic teams.
The Shreveport Times reports:
The board will update and supplement policies to ensure “full legal compliance across the school district” and is scheduling mandatory training for “all administrators, teachers and coaches on the policies and underlying laws,” according to the statement.
“We trust these affirmative steps will resolve the current federal court matter in short order so that precious taxpayer funds can be spent on continuing to improve the quality of educational services to students rather than on potentially expensive litigation,” the statement reads. “Bossier Schools will always carefully respect and preserve the fundamental rights of all students, including their cherished First Amendment right to freedom of religion.
Whether these changes will halt the lawsuit as intended will likely depend on the details of those policy changes. Americans United, which filed the complaint on behalf of four parents, says per the Shreveport Times report that they have no plans to withdraw the suit, but hopes “these are the first signs of a resolution.”