July 24, 2016

Intermittent clouds

School board in Ohio fires teacher in crosses case

MOUNT VERNON — An Ohio science teacher accused of burning the image of a cross on students’ arms has officially been fired.

The Mount Vernon school board voted 4-1 Monday night to accept a state hearing officer’s recommendation to terminate John Freshwater. The Columbus Dispatch reported the firing took effect a few hours later, at midnight.

Freshwater had appealed his earlier firing by the board. An internal investigation found he had preached Christian beliefs in class. He also was accused of using a scientific device to mark several students with a cross and of keeping a Bible on his desk.

The hearing officer’s report issued Friday said Freshwater sowed doubt and confusion in the minds of impressionable students.

Freshwater has not responded to messages for comment.