In an item headlined, "School goes ballistic when 2nd-grader draws Jesus: Boy, 8, said to gets psych evaluation after sketch of Christ on cross called ‘violent’" on December 15, 2009, Chelsea Schilling of WorldNetDaily reported that an 8-year-old boy at Lowell Maxham Elementary School in Taunton, MA, was suspended from school and forced to undergo a psychological evaluation after he drew a picture of Jesus Christ on the cross, his father claims. His teacher allegedly said the second-grade student created a violent drawing, the Taunton Daily Gazette reported. The boy’s picture portrayed a crucified Jesus with Xs over his eyes to indicate that he had died on the cross. The child’s father, outraged at the school’s action, asked to remain anonymous to protect his son. He said his boy drew the picture after returning from a family trip to see the Christmas display at the National Shrine of Our Lady of La Salette, a Christian retreat. He said when the teacher asked students to draw something that reminded them of Christmas on Dec. 2, the boy recalled his trip and created a portrait of Christ on the cross. "As far as I’m concerned, they’re violating his religion," he told the newspaper. Associated Advocacy Center educational consultant Toni Saunders said, "I think what happened is that because he put Xs in the eyes of Jesus, the teacher was alarmed and they told the parents they thought it was violent." Saunders said the boy has special needs, and the school reacted inappropriately. "They made him leave school, and they recommended that a psychiatrist do an evaluation," she said. The boy’s father told the newspaper the school required an evaluation – at the parents’ expense – before the student would be allowed to return. However, the school district claims the boy was never suspended. "This incident occurred nearly two weeks ago," said a statement from the district. "It was handled appropriately, and the school staff and family had been working together in a cooperative and positive manner." [Note–that’s what they said, but that’s not what the evidence seems to indicate.] The father said his son, who receives special reading and speech instruction, has never shown a propensity toward violence. "He’s never been suspended," he said. "He’s 8 years old. They overreacted." The boy returned to school on Dec. 7, but he said his son has been traumatized and will be transferred to another school in the district. The district said its actions were not religious and nature and were based solely on the wellbeing of the student. [Note: yes, there are always two sides to any story, but my reaction to this is, "Yeah! Right!"] Bloggers have overwhelmingly demanded that the teacher be fired. One said, "I would like to start a petition to suspend this teacher immediately pending a full investigation into whether or not she should be terminated. Some parents try very hard to instill the values of religion in their children, and for this teacher to tell this student he did something wrong is disgusting. If my kids were in her class, I would pull them out and demand a new teacher or a change of schools." I would just choose to homeschool. I realize that this may be an extreme reaction, but things like this just keep happening and happening and happening and show a decidedly anti-religious bias that seems to permeate the public school culture. I saw a later item in which the school claims that its decision was not the result of the picture of Jesus on the cross, but there are still a lot of unanswered questions that abound about this incident.