Matter “resolved” after Jasper coach-led prayer investigation

Investigation Into An Area Football Coach Leading Players In Prayer

JASPER, Mo. – A Jasper Schools lawyer says the matter involving alleged coach-led prayers has been resolved.

The Freedom from Religion Foundation had sent a letter to the Jasper R-V School District on behalf of the parent of a player. The complaint alleged that Head Football Coach Joey Ballard had led players in prayer before games.

(Previous Story: Prayer before football games leads to investigation)

The foundation argued that it is a violation of the U.S. Constitution for public school athletic coaches to lead their teams in prayer, citing Supreme Court cases that have struck down school-sponsored prayer in public schools.

The School District investigated the matter and is not sharing the results of that investigation. However, a law firm for the Jasper R-V School District, EdCounsel, released the following statement on behalf of the District: to the Freedom From Religion Foundation,

“In response to your letter dated October 6, 2020, we write to advise you about the actions the District took in response to your initial correspondence indicating that a coach of the Jasper R-V School District was leading students prayer. In response to your complaint, the District conducted an investigation into the matter. We are unable to share the results of that investigation with you, as it involves confidential personnel information. However, we can tell you that employees of the District were reminded of the District’s Board Policy regarding religion at school and were also instructed not to lead students in, or promote, prayer. This matter has therefore been resolved. ”

The Freedom From Religion Foundation says they are satisfied with the resolve.

Jasper R-5 School District, MO RESPONSE