A California school district is investigating one of its high school teachers after receiving a complaint that "Bible cookies" were being distributed in class and students were encouraged to lookup Bible versus and attend an after-school Bible club.
After being contacted by one of the school's students who complained about the teacher's actions, Washington, D.C.-based Americans United for Separation of Church and State sent a letter to the Manteca Unified District regarding New Vision High School teacher John Alameda, stating that his actions are a violation of the U.S. Constitution.
"We understand that Alameda not only sponsors the [Bible] club but also shares his Christian beliefs during school hours and frequently encourages his students to attend the club's meetings," Alex Luchenitser, associate legal director at Americans United and one of the signees of the letter,said in the complaint to Manteca Unified District Superintendent Jason Messer and New Vision Principal Sonya Arellano.
"Furthermore, he offers extra credit for copying Bible verses and gives students 'Bible cookies' as a reward for completing class assignments. We write to inform you that these actions violate the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution," added Luchenitser, who told CP, that he school District has acknowledged our complaint and has said that it is investigating the matter."
Supporters of Alameda, like Jake MacAulay, chief operating officer of the Institute on the Constitution, have come to the teacher's defense.
"This is just another attack on Christianity. These attacks have become a pet of media and paper-tiger, un-American, atheist groups," MacAulay said on Wednesday. "We should not be afraid of these attacks. As a matter of fact, we should use them as stepping-stones to set the higher standard of education and Constitutional awareness that unfortunately escapes many well-intended, good-thinking Americans."
The controversy over Alameda made local news, with Fox 40 publishing a statement last Friday from the school district regarding the matter.
"The Manteca Unified School District is currently conducting an investigation into the complaint filed by the Americans United for the Separation of Church and State," read the statement. "While respecting the diversity and beliefs of our community, the Manteca Unified School District is dedicated to ensure the separation of Church and State as prescribed by law."
Manteca Unified School District did not return The Christian Post's request for comment by press time.