TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - Florida Gov. Rick Scott has asked the state university system chancellor to look into a classroom lesson at Florida Atlantic University in which students were instructed to stomp on sheets of paper that had "Jesus" written on them.
The class, taught by Vice Chairman of the Palm Beach County Democratic Party Deandre Poole, was reportedly following an exercise in the instructor's manual in a chapter dealing with the power of certain words.
Junior Ryan Rotelas said he refused to participate. While the university said Rotelas was never punished for his refusal, the student's attorney said school officials told Rotelas he would be suspended.
FAU officials have apologized and said the student will not be punished.
Scott said in a letter to system Chancellor Frank Brogan, "As we enter the week memorializing the events of Christ's passion, this incident gave me great concern over the lessons we are teaching our students."
The governor said, "The professor's lesson was offensive, and even intolerant, to Christians and those of all faiths who deserve to be respected as Americans entitled to religious freedom."
State University System spokeswoman Kim Wilmath said Florida Atlantic University "has apologized for any offense the exercise has caused and has pledged never to use this exercise again."