After Inquiry, Principal Removes the Word ‘Creator’ from School Creed

The other day, I posted about Hope Elementary Charter School, a taxpayer-funded school in North Carolina that had a school creed with a questionable reference:

Students are encouraged to memorize the Creed and recite the creed daily after morning announcements.

I am special because I have been made in the Creator’s image

Even though the school was originally established in 1998 as a private Christian school, they’ve been a public charter school since 2001. That reference had no business being there.

So I emailed Principal Clarissa Fleming asking why it was there, explaining why it shouldn’t be there, and requesting a response.

I’m pleased to report that she wrote back to me to say that there is no longer a reference to any “Creator.”

The new creed shortens that first line, removing God in the process:

Students are encouraged to memorize the Creed and recite the creed daily after morning announcements.

I am special.

That’s quick action on the part of the principal, so I thank her for making the change. I only wish she would have done it herself many years ago.

Sometimes, all it takes to make change happen is raising awareness about the issue.

About Hemant Mehta

Hemant Mehta is the editor of Friendly Atheist, appears on the Atheist Voice channel on YouTube, and co-hosts the uniquely-named Friendly Atheist Podcast. You can read much more about him here.

  • Richard Wade

    Well done, Hemant, and I commend the Principal for doing the right thing. We should reinforce proper responses with approval and then move on rather than grumble too much about how tardy it is.

  • Sven2547

    Rock on!

  • Richard

    Excellent!   A good outcome.  Thanks Hemant.

  • Baal

    Recitation of creeds is creepy.  Regardless, I’m happy they made the change.

  • The Other Weirdo

    Did we learn nothing from The Incredibles? In a world everyone is special, nobody is.

  • Stonyground

    It should be noted that when Genesis was written, monotheism had not really taken hold. The part where “God” says “Let us make man in our own image” was written by the Elohist author who was a believer in a pantheon of gods called the Elohim. El was the chief of these gods and it was he who said “Let us make man” etc. So technically we are special because we are made in the image of our creators, if you believe that kind of thing. The way that the Bible is translated, the fact that there are several different gods being referred to is obscured by the use of the name God, The Lord, The Lord God etc.

  • Russian Alex

    I’m wondering why is there a “creed” in a secular school in the first place.

  • Quintin van Zuijlen

    Spot on Richard. I’m always amazed at how people can remain angry well after the problem has been rectified. Couldn’t that anger be put to better uses? The problem is no more, so there’s nothing to be angry about. The right step was made, let’s celebrate.

  • OverlappingMagisteria

    Excellent!  But keep an eye on them once some teachers/parents notice the new change being “forced down our throats by the godless heathens!!!

  • Jon Peterson

    Or as I like to say:
    Backlash incoming in 5…4…3…2…

  • chicago dyke, Blonde

    revel in your power, Hemant. seriously. at this point, a simple google search on you will strike fear into the hearts of any school administrator wise enough to know what an expensive hassle (and potentially job-ending) any tussle with atheists can be. 

  • A3Kr0n

    Great job! While you’re still flush with victory go tell congress to remove God from our money.

  • David Starner

     Not to fly in capes? I find the idea behind the Incredibles, that there are superior people among us and any attempt to make the average person capable of what the supers are is the act of a villain, to be a little creepy.