- Associated Press - Friday, January 22, 2016

ERWIN, Tenn. (AP) - A Tennessee school board has removed a Christian flag from its public meeting room after objections were raised about the flag’s legality.

The Unicoi County Board of Education on Thursday voted to take the flag down, two months after the Freedom From Religion Foundation called for its removal, according to local media outlets. The foundation said the display of the flag goes against the U.S. Constitution since it was being displayed by a public entity.

In a unanimous vote, the school board passed a resolution drafted by Director of Schools John English that stated in part “while the flag represents a faith shared by most of this community, according to federal law no government entity is allowed to endorse a particular religious viewpoint.”

The room was silent Thursday night as English presented the flag to the Unicoi County Ministerial Association.

Freedom From Religion Foundation Staff Attorney Rebecca Markert submitted the request to remove the flag in a letter delivered to the schools central office on Nov. 16. The letter was prompted by a local resident who contacted the foundation out of concern for the flag’s display, Markert said.


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