CHICAGO (CN) – The Seventh Circuit affirmed the dismissal of a Wisconsin guidance counselor’s claim that her contract was not renewed because the South Shore Public School District was “hostile” toward her Christian beliefs on abstinence and prayer.
While working in Port Wing, a small town on the south shore of Lake Superior with a population of about 500, Kathryn Grossman was let go when her contract came up for tenure because of her reputation for bringing religion into the classroom. She threw out the school’s instructional pamphlets on how to use condoms, taught abstinence and prayed with students in her office, the ruling states.
The circuit unanimously concluded that the district’s decision was based on Grossman’s inappropriate conduct, not on her religious beliefs.
“Teachers and other public school employees have no right to make the promotion of their religion a part of their job description and by doing so precipitate a possible violation of the First Amendment’s establishment clause, even if the religious composition of the local community makes a legal challenge unlikely,” Judge Posner wrote. See ruling in Grossman v. South Shore Public School District