Community gathered to bless school year at School Prayer Day

City and religious leaders joined to pray

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. - Tomorrow marks the first day of school for many Bakersfield families and in preparation dozens of community members came together to say a prayer for the new school year. 

Earlier today, close to a hundred people filled the area near the Bakersfield Liberty Bell. It was the first time community leaders came together for School Prayer Day, announced by Assemblywoman Shannon Wood of the 34th District.

Vice mayor of Bakersfield, Ken Weir said events like help make a connection between religion and schools.

“A lot of forces are trying to separate god from our school, but I think it's time we realize you can't take god out of education, " Weir said.

But community leaders who created the event also saw today as an opportunity to remind parents and students about school safety,

Lorenzo Botello, who specializes in crisis intervention was sent to Taft High School to counsel students after a shooting at the school last year.

“We need to also be pray for their protection,” Botello said, “Anything can happen at school campuses unfortunately.”

He says although today's event might not immediately fix any problems, he hopes it brings awareness.

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