Jesus Portrait In Ohio Middle School To Remain On Display - NBC4: Columbus, Ohio News, Weather, and Sports (WCMH-TV)

Jesus Portrait In Ohio Middle School To Remain On Display

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JACKSON, Ohio -

The Jackson City School District met Tuesday evening to vote on whether a portrait of Jesus hanging inside a middle school should stay or go.

The school board is asking the ACLU to drop its lawsuit against the district for allowing them a portrait of Jesus to be hung in its middle school.

The portrait was given to Jackson Middle School in 1947 by the Hi-Y Club, a Christian organization.

The Liberty Legal Institute, a nonprofit group advocating on behalf of public religious displays says it is unconstitutional to take the portrait down.

"After our investigation, we determined that it was the free-speech of the Hi-Y Club instead of being government speech," said Hiram Sasser, with the Liberty Legal Institute.

Last week, a lawsuit was filed in the U.S. District Court on behalf of an unnamed student and two parents they claim the picture of Jesus at Jackson Middle School is unconstitutionally promoting religion.

Jackson City Schools Superintendent Phil Howard says he invited the ACLU members to come and speak with district administrators, but instead they filed a lawsuit.

The school board told those in attendance at Tuesday night's meeting that portraits belonging to any social club would be considered to be on display, like the portrait of Jesus.

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