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Dr. Apple is the principal of a small elementary school in a metropolitan school district.  One of her best teachers asked her first-graders to make a poster depicting things for which they were thankful.  One student made a poster expressing thanks for Jesus.  Posters were displayed in the school’s hallway.  The student’s poster was removed but later returned in a less prominent place.  The next year, the student was chosen to read a story to the class.  The student selected an adaption of a biblical story.

  1. Should the student be permitted to read his biblical story?  Why or why not?
  2. What is the legal issue surrounding both the poster and the biblical story?
  3. What legal risks does the school incur (if any) if it permits either or both of these activities?
  4. What legal risks does the school incur if it denies either or both of these practices?
  5. How would the courts likely rule in both cases?


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