Skip to main content

Minnesota school takes flak for charitable field trip to church

  • Author:
  • Updated:

A Washington, D.C.-based group took issue with a school trip to a Golden Valley church where students did volunteer work for charity, the Star Tribune reports.

Teachers took elementary school students from the Robbinsdale district's School of Engineering and Arts to help out at Calvary Lutheran Church in Golden Valley, as part of a program coordinated by Feed My Starving Children, a Christian initiative to reduce world hunger.

In the church basement, students helped pack meals for needy families in Haiti, the Star Tribune reports.

At least one parent objected and contacted the American Humanist Association, which fired off a letter to Principal Kim Hiel and district director of academics Lori Simon, calling the trip a serious violation of the Constitution, which calls for separation of church and state.

The letter notes that well-intentioned projects aimed at feeding the hungry can be done in other ways, and away from "theologically-charged environments" like churches.

A district spokeswoman told the Star Tribune that there was no proselytizing during the field trip, and district officials do not believe the trip violated the law.

A similar church-and-state issue surfaced recently in Burnsville, where a pastor who serves two churches in Minneapolis was fired from his school bus driving route after leading students on the bus in prayer.

Next Up

Jason Hackett

New face joining KARE 11's 'Sunrise' morning show

Jason Hackett will be joining Alicia Lewis and Guy Brown on KARE 11's morning show.

Screen Shot 2022-11-30 at 4.04.09 PM

Armed robbery suspect sought in two south metro investigations

The incidents took place at credit unions in Savage and Apple Valley.


Former Twin Cities plastic surgeon charged with sex crimes

Christopher Kovanda is accused of inappropriately touching woman under the guise of providing medical care.

Screen Shot 2022-11-15 at 4.23.26 PM

Minnesota man accused of murder in Chicago is arrested in Alabama

A 26-year-old man from a small town on the Iowa border is accused of murdering a Greyhound bus employee.


Support for Shakopee Public Schools employee diagnosed with cancer

The media specialist has been transitioned to hospice care recently.


Big November snowstorms uncommon in MN, but snowfall is increasing

This week's 8.4 inches at MSP Airport was one of the biggest November storms in the Twin Cities since 1991.


Minnesota nurses take vote on whether to hold second strike

The results will be determined Wednesday night.

unsplash medical marijuana

OCD, irritable bowel syndrome added to MN's medical marijuana list

They are the two latest qualifying medical conditions for Minnesota's marijuana program.

Screen Shot 2022-11-30 at 9.27.45 AM

Fundraiser created for family-owned Cô Tu' Oriental Cuisine after shooting

Support from the community will go towards medical expenses and overhead costs for the restaurant.

Erica Shameka Roberts

Police: Minnesota murder suspect arrested in Texas

Erica Roberts has been on the run since March.


Jackknifed semis close I-35 northbound near Faribault

There are icy conditions across Minnesota


Study examines trips, start of school

A study by the University of Minnesota Tourism Center found family trips of two or more nights away decreased 50 percent in August or September when the start of school was before Labor Day, the Associated Press reports. Researchers tell the AP the data will help Minnesota policy makers decide whether they still need to mandate a school start date.