Killeen Independent School District says no to the Charlie Brown decoration being re-posted

Posted at 10:31 PM, Dec 13, 2016
and last updated 2016-12-13 23:56:33-05

On Tuesday, lots of people came out to support a Killeen teacher who was forced to remove her Charlie Brown Christmas decoration, because of the biblical quote that was on it.

Dedra Shannon is a Nurse Aide at Patterson Middle School and during Tuesday evening’s school board meeting, Christians from all over Central Texas spoke out in favor of the decoration.

"We fought, we've died, we've bleed, we've served - for that reason, for free speech,” C.J. Gresham said.

Gresham is one retired soldier who was in favor of the poster, and free speech is what many were fighting for in that meeting.

"Ms. Shannon’s display, nothing about it in federal or state law requires that you censor and take down this poster," Jonathan Saenz, Shannon’s attorney said.

During the school board meeting, almost every person there stood up to support Dedra Shannon.

Killeen ISD administrators told the Shannon to take down the poster featuring Charlie Brown and a bible verse, saying it imposed personal beliefs on students.

The story upset some parents and led to this meeting, where it went before the Killeen School Board.

Shannon's attorney said the poster does not force religion but instead expresses freedom of speech. He'd hoped the school board would allow her to put it back up.

"It's very simple with just a few days left for Christmas break, the solution is simple and easy for Killeen ISD," Saenz said.

The school board did not agree, voting six to one against allowing the poster.

"Tonight, the Killeen ISD school board has decided to go rogue on the first amendment," Saenz said.

Shannon and her attorney reacted similarly, insinuating that this fight for free speech might turn into a lawsuit.

"I am deeply saddened that Killeen ISD decided to ban my Christmas display," Shannon said.

The president of the Killeen Independent School District was the only person who voted in favor of Shannon being allowed to put her decorations back up.

Shannon's attorney said they’ve also received support from the Ken Paxton, the Texas Attorney General. Therefore, Saenz believes if it does go to court, they’ll have a strong chance at winning.

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