Deandre Poole, FAU ' step on Jesus' controversy: Church of All Nations march against FAU

Group offended by 'Step on Jesus' assignment

BOCA RATON, Fla. -- More than 100 people marched from Church of All Nations in Boca Raton Thursday morning to show their disdain for how the 'Step on Jesus' incident was handled at Florida Atlantic University.

The marchers are asking Gov. Rick Scott and Florida Chancellor Frank Brogan to continue their investigation into the controversial class assignment taught by Dr. Deandre Poole, where students were asked to write "Jesus" on a piece of paper and step on it.

"We find this unprofessional and offensive. Why is it okay for the name of Jesus to be trivialized"? says Pastor Mark Boykin.

Marchers are calling on FAU's administration to take decisive action as a result of the offensive exercise.

"Mr. Governor, we're asking you to take action immediately and discharge FAU President Mary Jane Saunders from her duties for questionable leadership of this university," says Boykin.

An investigation by the Governor's Office is already underway. Gov. Scott wants an incident report explaining how Ryan Rotela, the student who refused to do the assignment, was treated by school administrators.

The University placed instructor Deandre Poole on paid administrative leave last week, citing safety concerns. But United Faculty of Florida representative Chris Robe says the focus should be on academic freedom in the classroom.

"If we dictate class discussions by offense, we'd discuss nothing because everything is offensive to someone," says Robe.

A spokesperson for the Board of Governors says the board is working with FAU to get a response to Gov. Scott, but there is no timeline as to when it will be complete.

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