Atheist group says nurse refused Carlisle student over Pledge of Allegiance

CARLISLE, Pa. (WHTM) – An atheist group is demanding an apology from the Carlisle Area School District after allegations that a school nurse refused to treat a student who didn’t take part in the Pledge of Allegiance.

The American Humanist Association demands a written apology to the eighth grader, it wants the district to tell students that they may remain seated during the Pledge, and it wants the district to instruct staff that they may not discipline students who refuse to participate.

The Washington, D.C.-based group says the Wilson Middle School student was in the nurse’s office with others who were ordered to stand when the Pledge was recited April 2. When the student refused to stand, she claims the nurse refused to treat her.

The American Humanist Association has represented students in religious freedom lawsuits against school districts nationwide. The group says the Carlisle student contacted them through its BoycottthePledge.com website.

In a statement, assistant superintendent Christina Spielbauer said the district is aware of the allegations and is investigating. She said the district is not permitted to disclose details of the investigation and cannot comment on situations involving specific students or staff.

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