Local parents ask questions after church video shown to middle schoolers

GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. A local dad, who wishes to remain anonymous, said he was surprised to see a permission slip his son brought home from school said Fellowship Church, not District 51.

His son was one of the students in a gym class at Grand Mesa Middle School that was shown a video for Fellowship Church's 4640 program.

The students were given the option to pick up permission slips with liability information and flyers after the video.

The dad brought the incident up to a group he belongs to, the Western Slope Atheists and Freethinkers, who said they're concerned about these kinds of activities happening in schools.

"It's well known that this type of postelytizing is not allowed in public schools and we want also assurance that the parents who were affected know that District 51 doesn't endorse this church and this facility," said Anne Landman, the group's spokesperson.

District 51 said this was an isolated incident that was the result of one teacher's mistake.

In a statement, the district said:
"District 51 has a policy in place that guides teachers and staff on the use of video in class. A recent isolated incident occurred where an error in judgment was made by one teacher, who showed a video that was optional to watch to one class of students without following policy. When school administrators learned of the incident, they promptly addressed the matter with the teacher involved and with the concerned parent who brought the matter to their attention. The District has not received any other calls or complaints regarding the incident to date."

District 51 did not want to talk on camera about the incident.

A pastor at Fellowship Church said the church didn't know this had happened and he did not give a video to a teacher to show.

District 51 does have an open forum policy in place that allows outside businesses and organizations to post flyers in schools.

Fellowship 4640 flyers were posted in Grand Mesa Middle School, but they had not gone through the process for district approval. If the had gone through the proper steps, District 51 said if they would have been approved despite having religious affiliation.


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