Catholic teachers fired for their beliefs at Christian school. Discrimination or free exercise of religion? News Roundup

The communications team is out of the office the rest of the week, so we’re bringing you a quick mid-week roundup.

Before we get to the news, today is the first day of Ramadan. So Ramadan Mubarak to those celebrating!
Onto the teachers. 11 employees, including 4 teachers at a Christian school in southern California were fired for their “differences in biblical interpretation and incompatible beliefs” (San Francisco Chronicle reports). Most of the employees were Roman Catholics, whose beliefs differed somewhat from the evangelical Crossroads Christian School. 11 families have pulled their kids out of the school and a reverend in the community said it feels like “religious cleansing” (The Press Enterprise reports).
Erwin Chemerinsky, the dean of UC Irvine's law school said, “They can specify they have to teach the subjects in a certain way. But they cannot discriminate in employment based upon religion.” On the other hand, Thomas Cathey, director of legal/legislative issues for the Colorado-based Association of Christian Schools International, which Crossroads belongs to, says the school falls under a religious institution exemption federal law and can fire employees for their conflicting beliefs (NBC reports).
Cases like this come up often with religious institutions. In April, the Hastings College of Law made headlines when the Supreme Court ruled that a Christian student group at the school could not discriminate against nonbelievers. The Washington Post wrote an interesting piece on the general direction courts are headed regarding discrimination versus free exercise of religion. We’ll keep you posted on the outcome of this latest case.
And in other news:
See you next week!