Opelika City Schools respond to letter from Freedom from Religion Foundation

Photo by Robert Noles

Special to the Opelika Observer

The following statement was issued from the office of Opelika City Schools Superintendent Mark Neighbors:

On Sept. 3, 2019 the Opelika City Schools Board of Education received a letter from the Freedom from Religion Foundation based in Madison, Wisconsin. The letter cited current Supreme Court ruling that school sponsored prayer is prohibited.  As stated in the letter, “The Supreme Court has specifically struck down invocations given over the loudspeaker at public school athletic events, even when student led.”   In addition, the courts prohibit coaches to lead or participate in prayer with students.  “We recognize that the United States of America is a nation of laws and we will abide by the current law,” stated OCS Superintendent Mark Neighbors. “Our students are allowed to pray, but our coaches are not allowed to participate.” 

The letter received and current laws regarding school prayer are being reviewed by the Opelika City Schools Board attorney to confirm what is allowable for students.  Beginning with the next home football game on Sept. 13 Opelika High School will have a moment of silence prior to the start of the game.


  1. Excellent. This is a good and proper thing.

    Our right to religious liberty necessarily includes the right to be free from Government Religion in any way, shape, kind or form.

    No public school or any other government entity has the authority to interfere with every parent’s right to raise their children in their own religious traditions. No public school or government entity has any authority to promote any religious tenet as an ‘officially correct’ one. Parents have a right to not have the government schools indoctrinate their children into someone else’s religious traditions. If you’re unclear on this concept, see this bit of humor: https://boards.fool.com/school-prayer-18121302.aspx


  2. May God Bless the students and families who stood up and recited Our Lord’s Prayer. We can never allow our freedoms to be stripped from us… ESPECIALLY not our freedom to worship peacefully. Christianity is not a religion of hate. It does not call for murder, or rape or mutilation or hate. It calls for peace and love. It even calls for tolerance. If we do not agree with how others worship… we do not attempt to stop them from their beliefs. As long as their worship does not teach hate and murder and rape… everyone is free to worship as they see fit. So, why attack the most peaceful of religions? Stand STRONG … You are not alone. <3

  3. I think this is rediculous. This is America and we should not have to change who we are because someone from another culture feels offended!!! Then tell them to move or stay home or cover their eyes and ears!! This world is getting worse because we are allowing it! Who is the one making this crap happen? I would love to know? You bunch of idiots!!!


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