ORLANDO, Fla. – School officials said Wednesday they can’t find any evidence to suggest that a kindergartner was told not to pray in a Seminole County elementary lunchroom.
“We found zero evidence an incident ever occurred,” district spokesman Mike Lawrence said. “There’s no proof whatsoever.” A district attorney sent a letter to the girl’s family and their lawyer outlining their conclusions.
“We apologized for the incident she believes occurred, but there was nothing warranted or found” in the investigation, Lawrence said.
Five-year-old Gabriella Perez told her parents that in March a staffer at Carillon Elementary in Oviedo stopped her from praying over her lunch.
Her father, Marcos Perez, who works for a Christian book publisher in Lake Mary that is promoting a book about the “attack on traditional values” in America, demanded an investigation and apology from the school.
Earlier this month, the girl and her parents described the incident to school officials.
The girl’s allegations spurred national news coverage by Fox News and conservative Christian publications, and the school received threatening phone calls.
“For what the school endured, this is very vindicating,” Lawrence said.