AU, ACLU Question N.Y. School Directory

Americans United and the American Civil Liberties Union are looking into complaints that a public school in Greece, N.Y., gave students a directory that included contact information for local church youth groups and programs.

The directory was put together by the school’s “Faith Committee,” which has held closed-door meetings for the past year. The committee formed after local pastors protested sex-related questions on a research survey given to students.

“What I learned after that meeting was that our faith communities felt they had no voice,” school board President Julia VanOrman told the Democrat and Chronicle. “So, I wanted to create this committee so we could work together to see what we could do together for youth.”

The directory distributed to students has a heavily Christian focus, listing 35 Christian churches in town.

This crosses the line, Gary Pudup, executive director of the Genesee Valley Chapter of the New York Civil Liberties Union told the Democrat and Chronicle.

“If my kid got this in school,” he said. “I think the message comes across clear that this is a Christian school district.”

AU is currently in the midst of a lawsuit challenging the town’s practice of opening board meetings with sectarian prayer, which is almost always Christian.