The Corpus Christi ISD Board of Trustees voted Monday against employing chaplains in schools.
The board had to vote on the issue in response to a bill approved by the Texas Legislature last spring, allowing public schools to hire unlicensed religious chaplains in mental health roles.
The board previously discussed school chaplains and expressed opposition to the idea in January, postponing the vote until this week in order to refine the language of a resolution, as required by state law.
The board’s decision follows the recommendation of Corpus Christi ISD administration, which took note of a letter signed this summer by 100 Texas chaplains opposing school chaplaincy programs as a replacement for school counselors and security measures.
Trustee Dolly Gonzales Trolley was not present at the meeting, but the remaining six board members voted unanimously for a resolution declaring that the district “shall not adopt a policy authorizing a single campus employ chaplains and/or accept volunteer chaplains under Chapter 23 of the Education Code. “
The resolution clarifies that chaplains are in no way excluded and can continue to volunteer in schools in the same manner as any other community volunteer, reaffirming “relationships and partnerships with all community volunteers in accordance with existing policies and procedures of the district”.
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This article was originally published on Corpus Christi Caller Times: Corpus Christi ISD will not hire school chaplains