The principal at Manchester Elementary School in Nebraska who was on administrative leave for censoring Christmas has resigned. Last night, the Elkhorn Public School Board voted unanimously to accept the resignation of Dr. Jennifer Sinclair at its meeting.
Liberty Counsel sent a demand letter in November to the superintendent of Elkhorn Public Schools when Sinclair directed teachers that “we are not to be doing any Christmas or holiday-specific themed activities with students. Santa and Christmas items are not to be on activities or copies,” because the schools must be “inclusive.”
The school district responded to the letter stating it had “investigated this matter and determined that Principal Sinclair’s memorandum did not comply with Board Policy.” Liberty Counsel’s letter expressly stated that it was not asking for the principal to be removed.
Principal Sinclair had issued a comprehensive list of “not acceptable” practices which included Santas, Christmas trees, “Elf on the Shelf,” Christmas music and movies, candy canes, reindeer, homemade ornament gifts, and red and green items.
The principal’s “acceptable” list included: “gifts to students;” “Snowmen, snow women, snow people” and “snowflakes;” “Gingerbread people;” “Holidays Around the World;” “Sledding;” “Hot chocolate;” “Polar Bears;” “Penguins;” “Scarves, boots, earmuffs, and hats;” “Yetis;” and “Olaf” (the snowman from the movie Frozen.
In her directive to teachers, Sinclair also stated, “Please reflect on what you’ve already copied, prepped and posted. I’m hopeful we can avoid the discomfort of me directly questioning something you’ve copied, posted and had your kids do. That makes me uncomfortable, and I know it doesn’t feel good. Signed, The (Unintentional) Grinch who stole Christmas (from Manchester).”
Used with the permission of Liberty Counsel.
Liberty Counsel is an international nonprofit, litigation, education, and policy organization dedicated to advancing religious freedom, the sanctity of life, and the family since 1989, by providing pro bono assistance and representation on these and related topics.