A Florida School District has voted to officially ban the distribution of all religious material on Tuesday evening.
The issue arose in 2014 when a Christian group placed bibles in the district schools for one day while another group was allowed to place atheist materials. However, it wasn’t until a satanic temple attempted to place their literature in schools that the policy began to concern parents and officials alike.
The vote ended in a 7-1 landslide and was put forth in an effort to prevent the New York-based Satanic church from providing the schools with coloring books and fact sheets related to their faith.
The old policy allowed the groups to leave religious literature on designated tables at the schools on a nationally recognized freedom day.
Board member Pam Gould was concerned that the change will deny the children access to vital parts of culture.
“My priority is to make sure kids have access to everything that will enrich their lives, even if we have a bump in the road,” she told reporters at local station WFTV.
A spokesman from the Liberty Counsel told the local station that the organization will take the issue to court if the religious materials are banned from the schools.
“If my client is turned away because my client is a religious organization,” he told reporters, “then I think we’ll have grounds to sue the school board based on an unconstitutional policy.”
However, school board chairman Bill Sublette said that the district is prepared to deal with any legal allegations that may come about.
“This board has been fully briefed on the legal issues,” Sublette said.
With this outcome came a win for the atheist group. David Williamson spoke for the group that wanted to distribute atheist literature to the schools.
“It was good to know that their goal is to make sure religious materials are not permitted to be in schools,” said Williamson.