Killeen school board votes to keep “Charlie Brown Christmas” decoration off staffer’s door

A poster on a Killeen middle school classroom door depicting a scene from “A Charlie Brown Christmas” has stirred up controversy because it contains quotes from the cartoon referring to the birth of Jesus.

On Dec. 7, Patterson Middle School’s principal asked staff member Dedra Shannon to remove the photo of Linus, with his words summarizing the biblical meaning of Christmas, according to a statement from Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton’s office.

The poster read: “For unto you is born this day in the city of David a savior which is Christ the Lord. That’s what Christmas is all about, Charlie Brown.”

On Friday, the Killeen Independent School District issued a statement in support of the principal’s action.

Paxton said in his statement that both the principal and the ISD feared the poster violated the First Amendment and would lead to a lawsuit. Paxton disagreed with their interpretations saying, “staff members may express their take on the holiday without infringing on the Constitution, even if they incorporate some religious terminology.”

The attorney general asked that the school and district rescind their “unlawful” policy, apologize to Shannon and move back into compliance with state and federal law.

The Killeen Daily Herald reported the removal of the decoration sparked nearly 500 comments its Facebook page and became state and national news over the past five days leading up to Tuesday’s meeting.

On Tuesday night, the Killeen ISD school board voted 6-1 to uphold the district’s decision to remove the poster.