Earlier this week, the Fox affiliate in Kansas City, Missouri, ran a report alleging that a local middle school student had been told by his teacher that he was not allowed to read his Bible in school during his free time:
The parents of a middle school student are upset because they say a teacher told their 12-year-old son he couldn’t read his favorite book in school, his Bible. The parents say their son’s fundamental rights were violated.
Loyal Grandstaff’s parents say they’re taking a “grand stance” to stand up for their son’s freedom of religion after they say a teacher told their son he couldn’t read his Bible in school.
Loyal says he loves reading his Bible and decided to bring it to school before the Christmas break so he could read it during his free time. But the seventh grader said his teacher told him it wasn’t allowed.
“I like to read my Bible because it’s a good book,” Loyal said.
He said he wasn’t reading out loud and said he wasn’t sharing the Bible with his classmates.
“I was just reading, just reading because I had free time. A time to do what I wanted to, so I just broke it out and read,” he explained.
“I feel like it violated his freedom of religion but also his freedom of speech,” Loyal’s dad, Justin Grandstaff, said.
A public school principal in Missouri pushed back against a middle school student’s claim that a teacher banned him from reading the Bible in school, claiming that the incident did not unfold as was alleged and that students are more than welcome to read their Bibles in school.
Lance Tobin, principal of Bueker Middle School in Marshall, Missouri, told TheBlaze on Friday that claims made by Loyal Grandstaff, a 7th grader at the school, had not been substantiated when a local outlet published them and that the situation has since been resolved.
“We just all agreed and we talked about school and religion,” Tobin said. “And I wanted to make sure that they were comfortable understanding that their child could have the Bible at school and could read the Bible at school.”
Tobin, who declined to go into specific detail when asked why the family alleged that a teacher had banned the 12 year old from reading the book if that story wasn’t accurate, said that going public with the claims was likely “something that [the family] felt like they needed to do at the time.”
When asked how the teacher accused of banning the Bible is faring in light of the attention the situation has been given, the principal added, “There is no teacher involved whatsoever.”
Tobin added that he was frustrated that WDAF-TV, a Kansas City-based Fox affiliate, aired the story before he had a chance to look into it, but affirmed that the situation has concluded. He would not comment when asked if the story was fabricated.