"Tolerance" in Action XVII: Teacher Fired Over "Religious" Music
Pacific Justice Foundation: Teacher Loses Job for Using Religious Music in Class
A dance teacher working for a public school district was terminated from her job after a complaint that she used religious music in her instruction. The complaint came from a school district staff member who alleged that the music referenced Jesus several times. In addition to secular music on the day in question, the instructor used a rendition of Dona Nobis Pachem and O Si Funi Mungu. Dona Nobis Pachem is a classical piece by J.S. Bach and is sung in Latin. O Si Funi Mungu, which is translated as “Praise God,” is sung in Swahili, though it has some English interspersed. Although the instructor uses a wide variety of music in her teaching, she is careful to use music that is family friendly. Moreover, the teacher offered to further expand her already diverse repertoire. Despite these reasonable steps, school officials refused to provide a resolution and terminated her contract. “It is clearly constitutional and legal for a teacher to use both religious and secular music as a part of instruction,” commented Brad Dacus, president of Pacific Justice Institute.Thanks to FaithMouse.