And there it is â€¦
October 26, 2005
As part of her literature classes, Erin Jensen told her students about different belief systems in the world.
Those lessons concerned a few parents of students at South Sevier High School in Monroe, leading to rumors about the teacher's own beliefs.
On Friday, Jensen took the stand during a trial in U.S. District Court to clear things up.
"I am not a witch," she testified as part of her lawsuit accusing Sevier School District officials of firing her because she is a woman and not a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
When asked if she ever taught witchcraft in her classes, Jensen - who says she was raised Mormon but has no religion - said, "No." [Ã¢â‚¬Â¦]
District official [sic] deny Jensen's allegations, saying she was let go as part of a staff reduction because of falling test scores among students and her teaching of core curriculum.
But the former teacher contends the real reason she was fired was that everyone in the small community knew she was non-Mormon. She notes that Superintendent Brent Thorne mentioned her coffee run to a bakery during a training seminar, according to the minutes of a Sevier District Board meeting in February 2003, when members voted to uphold the recommendation for her layoff.
The minutes also said, immediately after Thorne's comments, that Jensen believes in witchcraft and added, "Halloween is her favorite holiday and she doesn't hide the fact she prefers the dark side." Those portions were later deleted.Halloween's just around the corner.