A month ago, there was a news story about a Florida high school principal (Frank Lay) who asked another administrator to “offer a prayer of blessing during a school-day luncheon for the dedication of a new fieldhouse at Pace High School.”
It wasn’t the first time Lay ignored the church/state wall.
He was facing jail time and a $5,000 fine since he violated a court order demanding he not proselytize in the public school.
Yesterday, a judge issued a ruling on the case: Lay will not be going to jail.
Judge M. Case Rodgers ruled Thursday evening that Pace High School Principal Frank Lay and Athletic Director Robert Freeman didn’t violate a 2008 agreement with the American Civil Liberties Union that was approved by the court.
Rodgers said the prayer at a field house dedication during the school day that was held on church property was spontaneous, and there was seemingly no intent to violate the order.
The men could have faced up to six months in jail and $5,000 each in fines if the judge had ruled differently.
A more thorough article can be read here.
As I said before, I think jail would have been too harsh. The school board simply needs to lay down an ultimatum: If he ever preaches, proselytizes, or promotes his personal faith while in his capacity as a principal, he will be fired.
Nothing else is going to do the trick here.